Speed of man's Evolution

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by g0pher, Sep 7, 2007.

  1. In the last 2000 years, we've seen immense leaps in the intellectual ability of man.

    If evolution depends largely on environmental stresses for advancement and adaptability.

    Then does this mean that because man is at the top of the food chain, that he only has his fellow rival man as the direct stress or competitor he needs in order to induce evolutionary pressures to evolve more rapidly?
  2. its because intellectual evolution is not biological evolution. Creating new ideas takes much less time than new limbs or other physical structures. Ideas are also exponential in affect where as biology is linear.
  3. Like a mixed market economic system. But then my next question would be: "Why are a lot of Americans still dumb asses?"
  4. I doubt the intellectual ability of man has increased in the last 2000 years. We have learnt more, we have more knowledge, but I am almost certain we are still the same (mentally) now as we were then.
  5. In the last 2000 years, we've seen immense leaps in intellectual ability because of our social constructs, like number systems and calculators, that is incredible. These social constructs don't rely on biology.

    It may be possible for us to get biologically smarter, but while there is all this technology around that can get us intellectual results without the biological change, it is unlikely that the environment will prod us into change in our basic biological intellectual abilities.
  6. Yes, but (say within 2 million years for example) the physical size of the brain will increase again, or, the processing power of the brain, the neuron networks will become much more complex again to give some part of the human race an upper hand. Just like what happened with neanderthals and modern man. My assumption being that modern man had a smaller brain, but one with better processing power.

    for 95 percent of human history we lived as hunter gatherers. That is the bulk of our current genetic inheritance. Civilization has only been around for the last ten thousand years, less than an eyeblink in evolutionary terms.

    In surveys of the top 100,000 scientists in the world today they estimate that the current rapid advancement of the sciences will slow down to a crawl sometime within the next four to six hundred years, and it will require a few millennia after that for us to apply all that we have learned so quickly.
  7. If evolution is primarily about survival of the fittest, why didn't evolution stop at being something like the extremely fit, highly adaptable and rapidly multiplying being or something?
  8. Well, evolution is an infinite process... it is impossible to "de-evolve."

    But if you're looking at intellectual evolution in the sense of what challenges our minds the most, evolves it the most... then I don't see how killing beasts and picking berries is more intellectually stimulating than learning sciences, mathematics, language, arts, and history.

    Being free from the burdens of finding food has created the intellectual... not destroyed it. Now, the more time we can spend learning and challenging our minds the more capable we will become at it.

    But I reckon we've got a lot to learn about how to apply our own brains best.
  9. That sounds pretty much like humanity to me... ;) But still, I don't think it's done evolving, even humans will evolve again. Not sure if evolution is eternal or not but I would like to think so at this point!

Share This Page