Do we possess intrinsic knowledge?

  • #26
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Originally posted by wuliheron
The more intelligent the preditor, the more they play. Their play is simply practice for learning how to hunt and mate, and people are the ultimate preditors. Our insatiable curiosity usually focuses on these issues, but can extend into more abstract realms with a small percentage of the population.
So, are you saying that this insatiable curiousity is just an extention of preditory evolution carried to the extreme in some humans? That we are compelled to explore from sub-atomic particles to every nook and crany of the world, space and the solar sytems to finally the entire cosmos because we are really looking for something to eat or breed with?

You may be right. I don't know but that seems too pat an answer, too simplistic. I find it hard to accept that that is all there is to it. Maybe we are over evolved and too much of a generalistic species. Our intelligence and hense curiousity has gone beyound survival and reproduction too the point of diminishing returns.

Do you think this is inevitable for any sufficently developed and thus intelligent species?

Cats and dogs as well as other preditors when well fed spend their time sleeping and playing. We humans explore our minds as well as the universe once our basic needs are met. There are of course cats and dogs amoung our species too but so many of us devote so much time and effort into exploration that it has to be counterproductive.
Is this evolution?

Yes, I know asking why we ask is redundant. Why ask why? But this, I think, is the thing that really sets us off from animals and makes us human. The fundamental question is why. Why would evolution alone lead to intelligence and curiousity that becomes counterproductive as far as survival and reproduction is concerned to the point that it may be and is life threatening not only to our species but all life on earth?
 
  • #27
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Some people I've met are hardly what I would call insatiably curious. Of course humanity has the capacity for complex language and highly abstract thought, but it also has the capacity to produce dullards. As civilization and knowledge evolve, the more complex and curious we can become, however the origins of this capacity are still demonstrably within our natural heritage.

As occurs with all complex preditors, a human child deprived of the basics of language and abstract thought, of the teaching and wisdom of its peers and parents, will not fulfill its potential. Quite the opposite, it will be lucky to survive to puberty and display very primitive animal behaviors. You can love such a child all you want, but deprived of the basic teachings we require they will never mature.

Hellen Keller comes to mind, her family loved her but treated her as if she could not be taught anything.
 
  • #28
36
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I think man's drive to knowledge,such as philosophy(love of knowledge) does not necessarily stem up from a literal need for survival alone, although the latter is a basic trait. Rather it is man finding his place in this universe. Most likely a human being contemplates what is beyond him when his basic need, such as feeding himself, is already answered( that is if he lets his mind soar to more views rather than stagnate on illusionary pedestals that may eventually stagnate). Great cultures are achieved because of this.

However if man is manipulated in a scenario wherein his views are forced to be limited to a belly culture and his musings of being creative are suppressed or stifled due to i.e. selfish manipulations, rather than for fairness' sake, then therein lies the danger for it could create oppression and injustice, and ironically man may cease to 'survive' in the name of survival.

The concept of evolution may be a wholistic perspective of the totality ( though I consider man came both from creation and evolution). Perhaps this may be the difference to what had been referred to as Evolution of Consciousness.
 
  • #29
jammieg
Emotions may be considered a form of intrinsic knowledge given we all generally have similiar emotional responses to a specific stimulus, those emotions being designed to help take the better response to follow the nature of evolution or survival. Further on emotions may sprout into complex feelings as a child develops that are fast and reflexive ways of responding to complex stimulus, unlike logical reasoning which is deliberate and cumbersome but that feelings may be a primal kind of logic that is nonverbal and so difficult to communicate but also not bound in the labours of the speech center of the brain, yet formal logic is bound in speech and speech gives clarity to thought.
 

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