Well the world clearly didn’t end in 2012 as predicted my the incredulous masses, as I am still here to write this post. Now I have been away for a while I know, and as such my content uploading has been pretty much zero, of which i apologise. However, I have been away researching, exploring and finding new and wonderful facts to share and disseminate to all of you. And so, after a very long break, and a lot of research and getting back into the swing of scientific endeavours and fact finding, I am going to be posting once again.
However, today is not the day for a full post, as I am working tirelessly on a quick project as I write, but a full post will be up by next week most definitely. However, to entertain my blog until then, and to bring a bit of scientific fun and excitement I am going to share this video with you. It’s a song outlining the Theory of Evolution by natural selection. It’s very catchy and brilliantly educational for all ages I think. Enjoy.
It seems that in certain parts of the world, the theory of evolution is taught openly and freely in schools, colleges and universities. It has been noted that in many of these places it goes unchallenged and is allowed to proliferate freely, and to be entertained by many. It seems that this scientific theory is taught as openly and soundly as the theory of thermodynamics.
My past two posts have been sort of “off the wall,” and not seeming to have any real grounding in my normal and usual topics. But how many times can one write about the travesties of religion, the wonders of science and nature, the amazing power of humans and our scientific endeavours and our amazing frontiers? Well actually I could write an enormous amount, but that’s not the point. Why have I been writing these whimsical stories of my life? well for a very important reason. Ideological people assuming I have no ‘faith’ or love for humans, and that I don’t appreciate the world. Clearly these people have never read my posts, and have never actually looked at what an atheist, scientist, humanist and realist actually sees.
We as a species are one of the most caring animals on the planet. Like most primates we look after our young, teach them life skills and protect and care for them. But we don’t just stop there, we keep going right into a child’s adulthood, and caring for them even after then. We not only look after our young, our altruistic behaviour makes us look after other people, who we may not even know. This is demonstrated in our giving to charity, helping others in trouble and the fact that we have a society. If we didn’t respect each other, our society and civilisation would soon crumble. This altruistic behaviour is to be admired, for as a species it allows us to develop and grow into the species we are. It has given rise to medicine, it has generated industry and created welfare systems. Altruism and a caring attitude is absolutely necessary for our existence. But has our caring, medicine and humanitarian attitude caused our existence to change, and change the face of our evolution. Is our love changing the power of survival of the fittest on us?
It has been a fairly long time since I have written about the wonders of space. Since a small child the cosmos has fascinated me, and the vast expanse of the universe keeps my brain active and entertained to this day. The universe to me is a wonder of what nature and evolution can do. The sheer expanse of space-time is mind-boggling. To think the milky way, the little galaxy we live in, is 100,000 light years across is just a number so huge that the mind struggles to imagine its scale. And when you think that the milky way contains over 100 billion stars to potentially 300 billion stars, the brain stars to fuzz and frazzle, considering each one of those stars are the same size, and many more are larger, than the sun.
And to think that our star just sits in one of the arms of the milky way galaxy, being orbited by all 9 planets (pluto is still a planet to me). And our sun is just one of billions of stars in the milky way. And the earth also being just one of billions of planets in the milky way as well. ANd pushing even further out, the milky way, our home galaxy is just one of millions of billions in the universe. Now how many stars is that again? So what I’m trying to show is that the universe is big, and when i say big, i mean monstrously large, that the human mind soon crumbles at the size of the universe (and that’s just the universe we can see). So what about life? If the universe is big, what about the numbers for life?
We live in a world of high demand, increasing population, and an ever intensive requirement for food and natural resources. We have evolved to be a species which is capable of shaping it’s land beyond that of any other species in this planet. It is with our burgeoning intelligence that we have not only sculpted the land, but life itself. We have forced the hand of man into foresting, mining and harvesting. We have crafted animals through selective breeding into producing food, clothes and entertainment. We as a species in the “western world” do not have to hunt, harvest or hem. We live in a world of man made wonders, where the natural world is nearly forgotten about, even though it is it which is still the heart of all industries today.
But even though we have managed to bend nature to our will, we still seem to want to bend it further, so that it is no longer the work of nature and evolution, which is moulded by the unconscious hand of natural selection, but that it is moulded and changed by the conscious and arrogant hand of man. We don’t seem to be happy with the current cropping, and want to make it even easier by modifying plant and animals genes, commonly known as Genetically Modified Food.
The title of this post is obviously an interesting choice of words. However, those words were not mine, but that of V.S. Ramachandran in his book, The Tell-Tale Brain. He uses those words to describe why the brain does certain things, even though it is irrational.
In Ramas book, he uses it to show that the brain chooses absurdities to negate discrepancies of any kind. In that section of his book, he explains capgras syndrome, where a relative or loved one is classed to be an impostor. Rama explains that the patients brain chooses the impostor route, as the brain doesn’t feel the emotion due to a break that links certain parts in the brain. It is absurd for it to be an impostor, and the brain knows that facially and vocally that it is their mother, but since the emotional centre has lost connection, he doesn’t feel the same way towards them. As a result, the brain chooses the disposition, that they are a fraud.