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Darwin and sexual selection

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Category: GENERAL HISTORY
Forum Name: Natural Sciences through the Ages
Forum Description: Discuss natural science and its effects on the world
URL: http://www.worldhistoria.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=129718
Printed Date: 08 Dec 2019 at 23:57
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Topic: Darwin and sexual selection
Posted By: franciscosan
Subject: Darwin and sexual selection
Date Posted: 14 May 2018 at 10:37
Jordon Peterson in a youtube video states that unlike the evolutionary biologists following after Darwin,  Darwin believed in sexual selection in addition to natural selection.  Sexual selection involves choice, particularly with women choosing their mates, and men choosing both individually and collectively their method of success, which is 'verified' (or shown inadequate) by women's choice.  In other words, for Darwin himself, there is not the cold determinism that so many scientists get orgasmic over.  There is room for free will and conscious decision, although not completely conscious.  I think that it is really more social-Darwinism that looks upon things as determined, and that that determination confirms the social hierarchy in the darkest manner.



Replies:
Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 15 May 2018 at 00:37
In a society where men compete for women by fighting would the female response to the charm factor cease to operate?
Darwin called it "charm" referring to the different bird songs used by the opposite sex of the same species. Everyone takes it for granted now that plumage is integral to the mating game.
So would the human female ever respond to charm if the society values fighters?
Seems to me that if it were ever a matter of charm like in birdsongs, then it would remain an attractive quality for a mate. Darwin wrote at one time that the female mechanism for choosing a mate would be inactive if men merely took the woman they won.

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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 16 May 2018 at 11:10
Men compete, but usually that does not consist of directly fighting.  Part of human female sexuality is that times of fertility are secret, and so therefore the male must stay around to be sure his children are his, (and thus society is born).  For Peterson, what men are responsible for are various views of society, and of what it consists.  Women can choose to reinforce this view by having the man's children and giving such a view a future.  Brute strength is only one thing that is useful in determining who is "stronger."  Unlike chimps humans generally don't fight to the death, but establish a pecking order, a hierarchy.  Cooperation is a very important virtue amongst humans.  Men admire the big, strong-jawed he-man, but I am not sure that is what women admire.

Speaking of charm, I remember a science fiction short story (Walther Jon Williams?) where the thief bribes a guard (for information), by sharing a cuban cigar with him.  Of course, the thief never says that is what he is doing, but that is what he is doing.  It is something small, special and significant, a charm.  You are scratching his back, and so he is scratching yours (monkey grooming habits.)  I suspect that it something like that, that gets "good" girls in trouble in a family way.Hug  It can be that the thing that attracts a woman to a particular man, is that he is carefree, that he is not responsible and thus won't tie her down, that he is not only not the top of the hierarchy, but tries to avoid the hierarchy altogether.  Of course, in avoiding it, he is part of another, his own hierarchy.  "You cannot go against nature, because when you do, that is part of nature too."  Midnight Oil. 

Some feminists seem to want to make men into women, and all they really make of them is bad men.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 18 May 2018 at 01:06
Men don't compete by physically fighting but it was known to happen in the past.


Quote human female sexuality is that times of fertility are secret, and so therefore the male must stay around to be sure his children are his, (and thus society is born).



What time frame or tribe are you describing? Are you saying modern men?
In the age of DNA testing?

In tribal life female fertility was not a mystery, least of all to women. Remember they needed to reproduce there would have been ceremony and ritual around fertility. Also the reproductive cycle is mostly predictable.

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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: Alexis5
Date Posted: 18 May 2018 at 03:59
 It seems to me that even in modern societies , at least in most cases , the male human is the sex who selects and the female human is sex who is selected .
 Just look at the advertisement in this page , and almost 90 percent of all pages on the web , you can see only beautiful women and not handsome men .
 Even from popular songs and video musics , you may come the conclusion that  the dominant sex is the male human who selects a mate .
 And it seems to be an accepted paradigm even among most of women .
 Perhaps that's why when some feminists  want to make men into women,  all they really make of them is bad men (in that accepted paradigm) .
 And perhaps whenever you see many advertisements showing handsome men , that would be the time you may say there's no dominant sex , no sexual discrimination and not so much sex scandals .
 


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 18 May 2018 at 08:34
Women's magazines show women and men's magazines show women.  Not sure what that means.  Human fertility is secret from men, women don't go into heat like a female dog and become (obviously) receptive when it is time.  If you (a male) want to insure that a woman has your offspring, you have to stick around. and you have to also stick around for raising of the infant since human infants are rather helpless and labor intensive.

What are all those popular songs singing about?  Usually women and love, but also how much am I a great guy so, chicks, please pay attention to me and I will praise your beauty until the ends of the Earth!  The male bird does an intricate song and dance in order to attract a mate, I am not sure humans are that different.  Is it the male that is concentrated upon?  or the female?  It is interesting though that the human plumage is more elaborate for the female than the male, unlike birds.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 18 May 2018 at 09:43
Hi Alexis5, I think the culture that we know is about men selecting for preffered females. Which may not reflect the female preference like charm but offer security if his is swift and strong:) I did think these ads were generated by web searches but it has been the female form in the foreground. That will change now that sexuality is as they say, fluid. The Greeks made do without women, more than sex even love.
It's all in the mind. Males are the originators, women make things happen and the young people keep expanding our intentions. I also kind of expect "me too" to backfire when it becomes known generally, that women can be perverts and abuse people in the work place. More men will speak up after one xl media bomb.

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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 18 May 2018 at 10:00
Not sure which Jordan Peterson video you are referring to, is he referring to modern times?

Fertility is important in tribal societies, so important that girls are barely old enough to reproduce when they become mothers. They can't keep it from men, there is a whole social structure around fertility.

"The three days leading up to and including ovulation are the most fertile.
Depending on your cycle length the most fertile days in the cycle varies:
If you have 28 days between periods ovulation typically happens on day 14, and the most fertile days are days 12, 13, and 14.-webMD"




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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 18 May 2018 at 12:39
I think it was Jordan Peterson and Nathan Carey, or a selection of it.  But, I am not sure about it.  It was him discussing with someone else.

Girls have to deal with (living through) pregnancy, and boys have to worry about being run through by spear.  You might say, they both have to worry about getting the shaftWink

If ovulation happens on day 14, then how can 12, and 13 be most fertile??  You don't have to answer that....  Just remembering how for Judaism, a woman is unclean during menstruation and a week after, or maybe it was extended by Medieval Jews to 2 weeks after(?) which would make peak fertility happen when the (horny) man can once again touch the woman.  And of course he is not supposed to satisfy himself.  btw woman can't work when they are unclean.  Also men are unclean at certain times too.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 18 May 2018 at 14:21
It's a fascinating question since the songbird makes a choice to an extent, there is no denying the hard wired attraction for sound. Which probably means that we are also pretty helpless after all. The smell of a mate is significant for women. Men find the fish then make like the bishop.


"there's room for a small one, said the actress to the bishop."

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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: Alexis5
Date Posted: 18 May 2018 at 21:18
Thanks for your replies , perhaps the main reason that, in mammals , it's mostly the male sex who goes after female , is that  as you said , the male reproduction organs , unlike female's , are most of the time ready for reproduction and another important point is that in mammals a single male , unlike a single female , can fertilize many females at a time and that's why you can see many herds in the wild , are headed by a single strong dominant male with many subordinate females .
And perhaps that's the reason men , desire more  diversity in sexual relations, and women unlike men relies much more on affection and durability in sexual relations than men .

 So because of those reasons , in the process of evolution of mammals , it's the male sex who is stronger and initiates mating .

 But I think although human is a kind of evolved animal , we should somehow depart from our brute origins and perhaps change our viewpoints about sexual relations .
Perhaps the goal of sexual relation is not just reproduction , and if we want to make it more humane , we should give it some kind of spirituality and perhaps then ,  it would really become spiritual .



Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 20 May 2018 at 14:49
all the woman has to do is whistle, and the boys come running, now whose the stronger?

Females are necessary, the only other thing that is necessary, is one male, although more than that is needed so that one does not create a genetic dead-end.  Men go to war, not because men are belligerent, but because they are, individually, "disposable."

Humans have a long gestation period, plus a long infancy.  Question is, what do you call "reproduction?"  "the wham, bam, thank you ma'am"? or being there for the long hall?

It is spiritual, its creation, its life.  Spirit is what you start with, not some add-on after the fact. imo.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 14 Jun 2018 at 14:05
Only Bonobos have more sex than humans it could be the energy exchange.
Karma Sutra- Kriyas(action), pranayama(controlling breath) create ecstatic electricity kind of like a waterwheel. Kriyas used in sacred sex require control, not lust to move energy around in the body. The sex is often not the object of the practice. Using the energy to pipeline into spiritual ascent is the religious purpose.


I saw a recent news article about the bottleneck effect due to Y chromone collapse:
"In the new study, published in Nature Communications, a team of researchers from Stanford University used mathematical modeling and computer simulations to test this theory. When they pitted patrilineal clans against each other in fierce battles over the resources necessary for their survival, they found that Y-chromosome diversity dropped. On the other hand, when they simulated battles between groups in which both men and women were allowed to move across clan lines, genetic diversity didn’t suffer as much."

https://www.history.com/news/ancient-clan-wars-male-chromosome-collapse" rel="nofollow - https://www.history.com/news/ancient-clan-wars-male-chromosome-collapse

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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: toyomotor
Date Posted: 14 Jun 2018 at 15:16
V.
Quote I saw a recent news article about the bottleneck effect due to Y chromone collapse:"In the new study, published in Nature Communications, a team of researchers from Stanford University used mathematical modeling and computer simulations to test this theory. When they pitted patrilineal clans against each other in fierce battles over the resources necessary for their survival, they found that Y-chromosome diversity dropped. On the other hand, when they simulated battles between groups in which both men and women were allowed to move across clan lines, genetic diversity didn’t suffer as much."

I posted this on the topic related to Human Genetics, which we were discussing a couple of months ago.

The fact that frequent warring could have resulted in a dimunition of YDNA is only a supposition at this stage, but it seems possible.



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“The biggest surprise in a man’s life is old age.”


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 17 Jun 2018 at 01:41
Originally posted by toyomotor toyomotor wrote:

V.
Quote <span style=": rgb231, 228, 216;">I saw a recent news article about the bottleneck effect due to Y chromone collapse:</span><span style=": rgb231, 228, 216;">"In the new study, published in Nature Communications, a team of researchers from Stanford University used mathematical modeling and computer simulations to test this theory. When they pitted patrilineal clans against each other in fierce battles over the resources necessary for their survival, they found that Y-chromosome diversity dropped. On the other hand, when they simulated battles between groups in which both men and women were allowed to move across clan lines, genetic diversity didn’t suffer as much."
</span>

I posted this on the topic related to Human Genetics, which we were discussing a couple of months ago.

The fact that frequent warring could have resulted in a dimunition of YDNA is only a supposition at this stage, but it seems possible.<br style=": rgb231, 228, 216;">



Yes I remember when you mentioned it, there was a recent news story bc scientists developed a new computer model that reinforces the theory about "Clan Wars" limiting the diversity of Y chromosomes.
I agree it's not really news just more evidence.
http://https://www.history.com/news/ancient-clan-wars-male-chromosome-collapse?source=techstories.org" rel="nofollow - https://www.history.com/news/ancient-clan-wars-male-chromosome-collapse?source=techstories.org

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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 24 Jun 2018 at 09:22
Gay men have more sex than straight couples, have more sex than Lesbian couples.  Could it be energy exchange?  Are gay men more spiritual in a tantric kind of way?  I think that there may be a little self-justification in the process.   Maybe it is just good clean fun, or dirty fun as the case may be.

Maybe some are doing it for enlightenment, but maybe it is also a good pickup line, I wouldn't know, either way:(  But, my original point is that Darwin not only advocated "natural selection," but also sexual selection.  For Darwin (as far as I understand) that meant there was choosing and intentionality involved, not just sheer mechanical necessity.  Evolutionary biologists (Huxley?? Dawkins??) paint Darwin as being a pure determinist, nature as red of tooth and claw.  It seems like a bleak world, "Darwin says that God cannot exist."  But, low and behold, Darwin did not say that, or at least it looks like Darwin had a way out of eugenics and other nightmares.  "Sexual selection" seems open to Freud and to seduction rather than just sheer "production."

Is there anything more ridiculous than the "two backed beast" of Shakespeare?  Think about it.... 


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 25 Jun 2018 at 10:15
Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

Gay men have more sex than straight couples, have more sex than Lesbian couples.  Could it be energy exchange?  Are gay men more spiritual in a tantric kind of way?  I think that there may be a little self-justification in the process.   Maybe it is just good clean fun, or dirty fun as the case may be.

Maybe some are doing it for enlightenment, but maybe it is also a good pickup line, I wouldn't know, either way:(  But, my original point is that Darwin not only advocated "natural selection," but also sexual selection.  For Darwin (as far as I understand) that meant there was choosing and intentionality involved, not just sheer mechanical necessity.  Evolutionary biologists (Huxley?? Dawkins??) paint Darwin as being a pure determinist, nature as red of tooth and claw.  It seems like a bleak world, "Darwin says that God cannot exist."  But, low and behold, Darwin did not say that, or at least it looks like Darwin had a way out of eugenics and other nightmares.  "Sexual selection" seems open to Freud and to seduction rather than just sheer "production."

Is there anything more ridiculous than the "two backed beast" of Shakespeare?  Think about it.... 



Which age group are the stats on men having sex limited to? Just curious.

Are Freud and Darwin just imposing judgements on sexuality? A drive to live couldn't be other than God- inspired. Freud's views on sexuality were forged in his own pubescent discoveries with his nursemaid. We all bring our own leanings into thoughts on sexuality.

Bronislaw Malinowski found no concept of "fatherhood" among the Aborigines. There was no discussion of paternity as all men would be fathers to all the children, women likewise.
In the Trobriand islands Malinowski sees a similar lack of interest in paternity and similar group parenting, multiple partners in sex and no form of matrimony. They reproduce with the least possible restriction.

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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 25 Jun 2018 at 15:01
Don't know anything about sex stats, Camille Paglia made the comment about gays/straights/lesbians.

Whatever Freud and Darwin are doing, they are not _just_ imposing judgments.  They are making insightful observations based on revolutionary theories.  One may agree with them or disagree with them, but if one is going to do so, it is best to be informed about them, and not disagree (or agree) out of _just_ ignorance.  Not that I have ever read either directly, but so many things to read, and so little time!

I don't think that "fatherhood" is obvious.  A woman is with a man, and 9 months later a child arrives, say, it takes a couple of months, maybe, for a pregnancy to show, and for one girl at the coffeehouse nobody (else) knew she was pregnant until her water broke.  That is probably why the Greeks have so many myths about Leda and the swan, Europa and the bull, etc.  Of course, they were all Zeus playing around.  Another girl at the coffeehouse was named after a river in Ireland, story was the husband went off to the crusades and came back, and the woman had a son not old enough to be his.  She said that she had bathed in the local river.  So do you divorce her or do you accept her story??  Single woman probably would be an outcast in medieval society if you cast her out.  Maybe it is best to accept her story.

If you have "blind variation" in evolution, you are bound to come up with every possibility.  However, I am not sure that patterning modern mating habits after stone age(?) villagers is necessarily the best idea.
The ancient Egyptians believed in marrying your sister.  One looks at the grotesque depictions of Akhenaten, and one wonders if they are un-idealized, realistic depictions of inbreeding.  Or at least, I do.  The Magi believed it was okay to marry your daughter.  And maybe it was okay in certain cultures, but also maybe we have grown out of that.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 25 Jun 2018 at 21:55
So no stats just a comment -barely a basis in fact. 

You use this  in the thread, admit there is no validity to it then proceed to warn others to be informed?

What the hell is in your gruel?


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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 26 Jun 2018 at 15:04
Camille Puglia wrote "Sexual Personae" which is a history of sexual attitudes and its reflection in art and literature since Venus of Willendorf, and the ancient Egyptians.  She is herself a lesbian, but by no means part of the party line of feminism and self-assessed victims.  Or one might say an older kind of feminism that believes in strong women and strong men too.  She comments on, amongst other things, the difference of the sexes, and says that men should be men and women should be women, and they are not the same.  I trust her comments and their insightfulness, much more than I trust dead statistics.

So tell me I am wrong.  But, also tell me why I am wrong.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 27 Jun 2018 at 01:55
I'm glad that you clarified, in fact you are telling us what you believe- not what is

No problem with you citing a twenty year old book as though it contains a statistical truth, unless you then go on to negate the value of statistics (you use statistics frequently, maybe you shouldn't bother).
I have no reason to believe that gay men have the most sex.


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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 27 Jun 2018 at 07:47
We got off the track a little, I was talking about how Darwin talks about sexual selection in addition to natural selection, and therefore all those evolutionary biologists are simplifying him and in the process, distorting him.  Of course, you may consider 'Origin of the Species" to be an old (obsolete) book, without any of those truth-telling statistics in it.  Maybe you don't care that people like Huxley had an axe to grind, specifically they were trying to professionalize biology (science in general) in the 19th century and so they were mocking all those amateur naturalists.  It is from Huxley that one gets 'the red of tooth and claw,' and the ugliest characteristics of the doctrine of survival of the fittest.  Socio-Darwinism, eugenics, that kind of stuff.  Sometime, I'll have to look closer at Darwin, but it is interesting that he may have not believed in the rampant determinism with which evolution is often saddled.

Sometimes it is nice to know that somebody is getting laid, good for them.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 28 Jun 2018 at 01:22
Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

We got off the track a little, I was talking about how Darwin talks about sexual selection in addition to natural selection, and therefore all those evolutionary biologists are simplifying him and in the process, distorting him.  Of course, you may consider 'Origin of the Species" to be an old (obsolete) book, without any of those truth-telling statistics in it.
I wouldn't compare "On the Origin of Species" with anything it's in a class by itself. Your writing suggested that you were alluding to facts. If I had more information I would have better understood the overall point.

Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

Maybe you don't care that people like Huxley had an axe to grind, specifically they were trying to professionalize biology (science in general) in the 19th century and so they were mocking all those amateur naturalists.  It is from Huxley that one gets 'the red of tooth and claw,' and the ugliest characteristics of the doctrine of survival of the fittest.  Socio-Darwinism, eugenics, that kind of stuff.  Sometime, I'll have to look closer at Darwin, but it is interesting that he may have not believed in the rampant determinism with which evolution is often saddled.

Not just Huxley but Lamarck and no one credits Alfred Russel Wallace but they all contributed to the idea of incremental natural selection. 
Why is it unreasonable to suggest that Darwin was influenced by the prevailing religious views of his time? Darwin considered becoming a clergy man and certainly he saw God at work in nature. 




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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 28 Jun 2018 at 12:02
It is not unreasonable, but is it necessary for explaining Darwin?  Is it sufficient for explaining Darwin?  Maybe, the problem of Darwin is not (necessarily) Darwin, but his followers explaining what they want, and when required by others demands explaining away the rest.

The fundamentalists have a vested interest in dismissing Darwin as an atheist, and the atheists have an interest in presenting Darwin as an atheist.  I find it interesting that both are wrong, and the views of both are a distorted view of Darwin, and it is telling that things are much more complex.

I seem to remember that Darwin and Wallace got along. yes? no?


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 03 Jul 2018 at 12:31
Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

It is not unreasonable, but is it necessary for explaining Darwin?  Is it sufficient for explaining Darwin?  Maybe, the problem of Darwin is not (necessarily) Darwin, but his followers explaining what they want, and when required by others demands explaining away the rest.
The "problem with Darwin" ? -didn't know we had one.

Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

I seem to remember that Darwin and Wallace got along. yes? no?
Yes it would seem in fact Wallace called it "Darwinism" in his summation of what he and Darwin understood about Natural Selection. It's just that Wallace historically was rarely mentioned in connection with Natural Selection and Darwin. According to the article at the link, Evolution fell out of favor for a while when people's minds were fixated elsewhere. Wallace even outlived Darwin but since he failed to promote his role in the development of the theory of Natural Selection, history left his name out of it.

"Even one of Wallace's own books appeared to pass on the credit for the discovery. It was called 'Darwinism: An Exposition of the Theory of Natural Selection with Some of Its Applications'!"

http://https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-wales-21549079" rel="nofollow - http://https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-wales-21549079


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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 04 Jul 2018 at 06:56
I think people who know about the history and the facts around the origin of evolution (natural selection), know about Wallace.  But, what is Wallace's first name?  For that matter what is Darwin's first name, we tend to go by last names for famous people.  Terribly informal, as a protestant, I generally don't attribute "st." to people, like Francis of Assisi, and as an American, I generally don't attribute knighthood to people, like "sir" Isaac Newton," or "Sir" Winston Churchill.

If you had to attribute an occupation to Wallace, what would you call him?
Same thing with Darwin, if you had to attribute an occupation to Darwin, what would you call him?
For example, if you wanted to attribute to Isaac Newton, you would say, "physicist, mathematician, astronomer," and if you wanted to get really exotic, you might say, "Hebrew scholar."


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 04 Jul 2018 at 07:14
Ok, Alfred (Russel) Wallace,
Charles Darwin.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 05 Jul 2018 at 08:19
Quote If you had to attribute an occupation to Wallace, what would you call him?
Same thing with Darwin, if you had to attribute an occupation to Darwin, what would you call him?

Darwin is a scientist- geologist-"naturalist" first because he studied geology at Cambridge and it was a private pursuit for his own curiosity. Darwin wrote much more about geology during the voyage of the Beagle 1831-1835 than he did about wildlife and geology was his motivation at the time. That was where he comes to understand the pressure of the landscape on natural selection.

Wallace was a scientist of biology, entomology- "naturalist". He comes to his eureka moment about natural selection in 1885 when he got sick in the jungle. Life has to adapt to survive micro organisms. Interesting here the landscape is a biological pressure on natural selection to become immune over generations; in contrast to the street dogs of India who all had solid colors, same size and shape bodies and the DNA. So assuming they have the same antibodies it's natural selection pressure from biological necessity. 


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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: L'Emmerdeur
Date Posted: 16 Jul 2018 at 23:37
Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

Jordon Peterson in a youtube video states that unlike the evolutionary biologists following after Darwin,  Darwin believed in sexual selection in addition to natural selection.  Sexual selection involves choice, particularly with women choosing their mates, and men choosing both individually and collectively their method of success, which is 'verified' (or shown inadequate) by women's choice.  In other words, for Darwin himself, there is not the cold determinism that so many scientists get orgasmic over.  There is room for free will and conscious decision, although not completely conscious.  I think that it is really more social-Darwinism that looks upon things as determined, and that that determination confirms the social hierarchy in the darkest manner.

I don't think any reputable evolutionary biologists who followed Darwin denied that sexual selection was an element of natural selection. Do you have evidence of such? Sexual selection is commonly taught as being a part of natural selection (see for instance https://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/evo_28" rel="nofollow - "Sexual Selection" | Understanding Evolution ).


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 17 Jul 2018 at 09:25
I have not checked it out in Darwin, but someday if I get around to it, >cross fingers< would like to do so.  From what Jordan Peterson says sexual selection is _in_addition_ to natural selection for Darwin.  Furthermore, it seems like people like Dawkins, are very reductionistic in their view of natural selection and are hard core determinists.  Sexual section for humans, as expressed by Peterson's understanding of Darwin, does not sound as bleak and deterministic as, for example, Dawkins portrays it.  Or someone like Huxley who was painting things, 'red of tooth and claw.'  Maybe you think that is what evolution is, but it is interesting to hear that Darwin was not necessarily already in the trap of socio-Darwinism and eugenics that scars so much of the 20th century.  
My question is not what "reputable evolutionary biologists" think? or even what does evolution (as a dogma) teach?  My question is, what did Darwin think?  Many of the "reputable evolutionary biologists" opened the door for eugenics and genocide under the mantle of socio-Darwinism.  To me that socially discredits them.  After the fact, 'Oh we didn't mean that,' does not make up for it.  It is interesting to hear that maybe Darwin himself did not fall into that nihilistic, deterministic trap.  
Of course, one thing that evolutionary biologists are looking more at these days, is cooperation, rather than just competition.  So maybe evolutionary biology is climbing out of that trap that resulted ultimately in Stalin and Hitler.  I do hope so, but I am wondering if these mistakes are ingrained in evolutionary biology, or if they are something that was added by "enthusiastic" followers.

Let us put it another way, Jack London was a socialist and a socio-Darwinist.  He put a bullet in his head, is Jack London an argument _for_ socio-Darwinism or against it?

I will look at your link on sexual selection, I do not claim that my understanding of it is that good, but really my concern is with Darwin directly, not necessarily the history of evolution since him.
Kind regards,
Jf



Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 18 Jul 2018 at 07:45
The individual organism will sacrifice itself for sexual selection, whereas natural selection seems to be a selfish proposition of survival of the individual.  What is sexual selection in humans but culture?  I am not really sure that culture is a subset of nature and natural selection.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 21 Jul 2018 at 15:20
Quote "After the fact, 'Oh we didn't mean that,' does not make up for it.  It is interesting to hear that maybe Darwin himself did not fall into that nihilistic, deterministic trap.  "

If Darwin doesn't fit into the deterministic, reductionist school then it's probably bc of the idea that there is an "engineer" in the garden :)Darwin was not out of line with the Church Fathers when he suggests a growing, evolving world. Origen, Thomas Aquinas and Augustine...highly conservative religious groups just refused to even entertain the idea.

http://https://biologos.org/common-questions/biblical-interpretation/early-interpretations-of-genesis" rel="nofollow - http://https://biologos.org/common-questions/biblical-interpretation/early-interpretations-of-genesis

St. Augustine of Hippo, a bishop in North Africa during the early fifth century, was another central figure of the period. Although he is widely known for Confessions, Augustine authored dozens of other works, several of which focus on Genesis 1–2.2 In The Literal Meaning of Genesis, Augustine argues that the first two chapters of Genesis are written to suit the understanding of the people at that time.In order to communicate in a way that all people could understand, the creation story was told in a simpler, allegorical fashion. Augustine also believed God created the world with the capacity to develop, a view that is harmonious with biological evolution.4


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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2018 at 11:25
A satyr was traveling with a man, and when they stopped, the man was blowing into his hands.  The satyr asked him what he was doing.  The man said, "I am warming my hands."  Later on, when they had stopped for dinner, the man started blowing on his tea, the satyr again asked what he was doing, the man said, "I am cooling my tea."  The satyr decided to leave his traveling companion, when the man asked why, the satyr said, "I could never be friends with someone so inconstant."

Natural selection says that organisms are designed and act for self-preservation, but when an organism acts in a self-destructive manner, it is called sexual selection which according to evolutionary biologists is a subset of natural selection.  So a male black widow giving his life to mate is part of sexual selection, which is part of the ?selfish preservation of natural selection(??).  I think it is better to say that these are two different, "opposite" forces linked together.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 30 Jul 2018 at 04:01
Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

A satyr was traveling with a man, and when they stopped, the man was blowing into his hands.  The satyr asked him what he was doing.  The man said, "I am warming my hands."  Later on, when they had stopped for dinner, the man started blowing on his tea, the satyr again asked what he was doing, the man said, "I am cooling my tea."  The satyr decided to leave his traveling companion, when the man asked why, the satyr said, "I could never be friends with someone so inconstant."
At first I didn't see where you were going with this, in fact it truly describes sexual cannibalism in insects.
The black widow may or may not kill the male- it's conditional and a variety of results are possible from the breeding encounter. The male lives for a year and travels a long way to find a mate he really has to take his chance when it comes. If he's not exhausted, he could potentially breed again but scientist don't really have any data.
Maybe more of a parenting strategy since the eggs are releasing hungry juveniles roughly the same size. If one is larger it will eat its siblings. Maintaining the mostly constant size is a careful mix of yolk and chemicals. and yes temperature did influence the growth of spider eggs.

Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:

Natural selection says that organisms are designed and act for self-preservation, but when an organism acts in a self-destructive manner, it is called sexual selection which according to evolutionary biologists is a subset of natural selection.  So a male black widow giving his life to mate is part of sexual selection, which is part of the ?selfish preservation of natural selection(??).  I think it is better to say that these are two different, "opposite" forces linked together.
Opposite forces that both work toward the most offspring which is the principal at work. The Altruistic component in pre-programmed cannibalism is seen in other species of spiders where the mother is liquefied from the inside out by the brood. She signals to them after preparing a web and triggering a response with with the weight of her own body. Complete surrender.


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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 30 Jul 2018 at 09:46
In Aristotle there is the "law of noncontradiction," which from my understanding is more like a really good idea, than having the firm foundation of a law.  If someone says that something is a book but not a book, then there is a valid question what the hell does that mean.  One would think that the opposites would "cancel" each other out and make gobbley-gook.  But maybe they are saying they want to go to a movie that is (originally) a book, but on the other hand no movie is ever as good as the book, so therefore it is also "not a book."  But it seems to me that "natural selection" gets defined as self(fish) preservation of the organism, and sexual selection gets defined as frequent self-sacrifice of the organism (albeit for offspring.  And yet, evolutionary biologists want to define the later as a subset of the former?  Like I said, the law of noncontradiction has not really the status of a law (but more of a good idea), but still I wonder if latter evolutionary biologists where not to hasty to try to reduce everything as much as they could.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 30 Jul 2018 at 15:47
No acknowledgement of teleology in Dawkin's model he says only genes are selected. Doesn't the hypothalamus control sex drive, bonding, hunger and the most basic functions of the primitive brain? 
This part of the brain can influence above the level of gene selection since it physiologically changes an individual. And we know homeostasis is necessary or changes in development will result.

A creature that reflects on it's past experience is capable of trying things differently. Orchids survived whatever killed off the dinosaurs. They became highly adaptable, created subgroups one of which increased the number of it's petals with bilateral symmetry replacing radial symmetry. An orchid that has to climb will survive on fog, underground they expel excess water. The fakery involved in enticing insects for pollination still has researchers puzzled.


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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 31 Jul 2018 at 11:51
I don't know what Dawkin's says, but I would prefer to get it from the horse's mouth and deal directly with the real revolutionary (Darwin), rather than a derivative.  From what I vaguely understand, however, is that epigenetics makes something like Lamarckism plausible.  I don't think that Darwin recognizes teleology either.  Natural theology might recognize teleology, but I think it drops out of science in the 1700s if not earlier.

I think that we could say behavior and culture are inherited (and thus selected).  Showing kindness to a child shows no benefit to me genetically (it is not my child), nevertheless I believe that I am selecting such behavior, and by my actions, passing it on.


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 01 Aug 2018 at 14:44
Darwin sees that the function creates the selection, not the other way around. He constantly reminds us that we don't know what the Final Cause of what sexuality is. There is an idea with Wallace too that NS is a reach towards a more beneficial frequency and the mechanism is the knowing where it is going- Linnaeus, Lamarck, Wallace all thought selected traits were acquired due to changes that occurred during the life of an animal.
How can you select for something that doesn't exist? Darwin studied sexual dimorphism in the species of orchid known as Primula veris. 

"To schematize the above Darwinian explanation, then (the generalized schema is in brackets): 
1. Dimorphism is present in Primula veris. [V is present in P] 
2. Dimorphism has the effect of increasing heteromorphic crosses and decreasing homomorphic fertilization. [V has effect E] 
3. Heteromorphic crosses are more fertile and produce more vigorous offspring than homomorphic fertilizations. [E is advantageous to P] 
4. Natural selection would thus favor increased dimorphism in Primula veris. [Therefore V in P would be selectively favored] 
5. Dimorphism is present in Primula veris because it promotes intercrossing. [Therefore E is the cause of V's presence in P] "

http://faculty.arts.ubc.ca/jbeatty/LennoxDarTeleo.pdf" rel="nofollow - http://faculty.arts.ubc.ca/jbeatty/LennoxDarTeleo.pdf
In the Foreward to a recent reprint of Darwin's classic, The Various Contrivances by Which Orchids are Fertilised by Insects, Michael Ghiselin writes: ...a myth has grown up, partly the work of [Asa] Gray, partly the work of Darwin's son and biographer, Frances Darwin, that Darwin somehow "brought teleology back into biology." In any nontrivial sense of that word, he did the exact opposite, getting rid of teleology and replacing it with a new way of thinking about adaptation... (Darwin 1984, xiii) This is a puzzling claim. This so-called "myth" is as much the work of Charles Darwin himself as of either individual mentioned here. In a brief appreciation of Darwin published in Nature, in June of 1874, Asa Gray noted "...Darwin's great service to Natural Science in bringing back to it Teleology: so that instead of Morphology versus Teleology, we shall have Morphology wedded to Teleology" (Gray 1963). Darwin quickly responded: What you say about Teleology pleases me especially and I do not think anyone else has ever noticed the point. (F. Darwin 1887, 308)  


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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 01 Aug 2018 at 14:55
Originally posted by franciscosan franciscosan wrote:


my original point is that Darwin not only advocated "natural selection," but also sexual selection.  For Darwin (as far as I understand) that meant there was choosing and intentionality involved, not just sheer mechanical necessity.  Evolutionary biologists (Huxley?? Dawkins??) paint Darwin as being a pure determinist, nature as red of tooth and claw.  It seems like a bleak world, "Darwin says that God cannot exist."  But, low and behold, Darwin did not say that, or at least it looks like Darwin had a way out of eugenics and other nightmares.  "Sexual selection" seems open to Freud and to seduction rather than just sheer "production."
Here's Dawkins. He's not totally deterministic, 
http://www.pbs.org/faithandreason/transcript/dawk-body.html" rel="nofollow - http://www.pbs.org/faithandreason/transcript/dawk-body.html

QUESTION: Professor Dawkins, could you explain your belief that human beings are just "gene machines"?

MR. DAWKINS: When I say that human beings are just gene machines, one shouldn't put too much emphasis on the word "just." There is a very great deal of complication, and indeed beauty in being a gene machine. What it means is that  http://www.pbs.org/faithandreason/biogloss/natsel-body.html" rel="nofollow - natural selection , Darwinian natural selection, which is the process that has brought all living things to be the way they are, is best seen at the gene level, is best seen as a process of differential survival among genes, and therefore living organisms and their bodies are best seen as machines programmed by the genes to propagate those very same genes. In that sense we are gene machines. But it is not intended to be at all a demeaning or belittling statement.




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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 05 Aug 2018 at 11:41
It would seem to me that "gene machine" would imply that the organism is mechanistic.  When I think of machines and mechanisms, I think of determinism, which is what the machine is until it breaks down.  An ideal machine would never break down, it would be set up to last forever.  Living organisms however, seem to have an obsolescence, unless they are Jelly Fish.  Also if the goal is to propagate the genes, then they are "flawed" and organism cannot through sexual reproduction propagate _its_ genes, it can propagate _their_ genes.  But, even so there are mutations.  So as far as the "machine for genes" metaphor is concerned, I think it is quite limited.  But then again, I don't think that much of Dawkins in general.  I think of Darwin as an original thinker, I think that if one can understand him, and his act of creation, then one get a good grasp on everyone after, because they're just doing a variant of the same theme.  Now maybe Dawkins has a good understanding of evolution, but Darwin was not 'just' evolution, he had a familiarity of religion, which is something that Dawkins seems to revile.  I would like to look at Darwin to see if he had the same flaws that Darwinism developed later, SocioDarwinism and eugenics?  or if he was bigger than that or ambiguous on that.
But V. you just want to drag me kicking and screaming in Dawkins, don't you?


Posted By: Vanuatu
Date Posted: 12 Aug 2018 at 01:13
Preferably, Dawkins would not speak about religion. Seems to have nothing to do with what he is really good at, he's not a philosopher or shouldn't be. 

http://https://evolutionnews.org/2018/08/intelligent-design-and-alfred-russel-wallaces-intelligent-evolution-different-yet-the-same/" rel="nofollow - http://https://evolutionnews.org/2018/08/intelligent-design-and-alfred-russel-wallaces-intelligent-evolution-different-yet-the-same/
There is a new book about Wallace and the excerpt explains why Wallace didn't agree that Intelligent Evolution was at work in adaptations, rather it was Intelligent Design and on that point he disagreed with Darwin. The author says Wallace's thinking is most like like Michael Behe-

"The idea of intelligent design, although congenial to some religious views of the universe, is independent of them. For example, the possibility of intelligent design is quite compatible with common descent, which some religious people disdain. What’s more, although some religious thinkers envision active, continuing intervention in nature, intelligent design is quite compatible with the view that the universe operates by unbroken laws, with the design of life perhaps packed into this initial set-up. In fact, possibilities two and three listed above — where non-randomness was assigned either to complex laws or to the environment — can be viewed as particular examples of this. I think it makes for greater clarity of discussion, however, just to acknowledge explicitly in those cases that the laws or special conditions were purposely designed to produce life."

(Michael Behe,  https://www.amazon.com/Edge-Evolution-Search-Limits-Darwinism/dp/0743296222" rel="nofollow - The Edge of Evolution , p. 166)



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Still round the corner there may wait, a new road or a secret gate. (J. R. R. Tolkien)


Posted By: franciscosan
Date Posted: 16 Aug 2018 at 13:03
Did you hear about the theft of Wallace's bird collection by a fly fisherman?  (seriously).  Listening to it in the car, so I don't quite know how it turned out.  They caught the guy, but I don't know how much damage he did before caught.  Was on radio lab.

Yeah, it would be better if Dawkins didn't try to do a drive-by shooting every chance he gets.  

I am looking at the Austrian economists, Hayek argues against design for human economy, but for human action in forming the economy.  It seems to me the same might be applied to (against) design in evolution, but that might also be against the idea of inexorable, and universal natural laws determining everything, all the time.  How many times do you miss something interesting on Public TV because you couldn't wait to go the bathroom?  (Public TV doesn't have commercial breaks).  Now how many times do you think something interesting happened, but you missed it, because you were, literally or figuratively, in the can?

Think of a computer program, that ordinarily acts a certain way, has a certain function, does a certain thing.  One could assume that it is entirely regular, but a programmer could have programmed it to do something on April Fools, if certain conditions are satisfied.  Those conditions might happen yearly or almost never (in the thousands of years.)  People seeing something happen might be tempted to dismiss it, or dismiss others who claim it.  Same thing with a backdoor programed into a program.  Why couldn't God create a backdoor to his 'program.'  Of course if he was the consummate white hat hacker, he could access his program whenever he wanted, on the fly.

I think walking on two legs is like a 'controlled' stumble across the room.  Walking is not a matter of design, and when you are old, the "impossibleness" of the idea of such a stumble working threatens the aged with falling down.  I am not sure there is a design for evolution either.  I mean, we can impose a design, but I am not sure that it really is, a priori, there before the fact.



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