Re: [evol-psych] News: Chimps and bonobos and other primates clearly show empathy with others who are suffering. (Getty Images)
- On 09/04/2013, at 2:48 AM, Phil Roberts, Jr. wrote:Edgar Owen wrote:
Of course it is 'because they think they should be' in exactly
the same sense that humans do. Only difference is they don't express
it in English..
I'm not quite so certain about this as you appear to be.
OTOH, I don't think it unreasonable to suppose that a chimp
would NOT experience feelings of worthlessness when failing
to live up to some internalized standard of what it means to
be a chimpanzee. But I certainly am not claiming to KNOW this.
It merely seems to follow if my basic premise is correct,
i.e., that 'feelings of worthlessness' are a maladaptive
byproduct of the evolution of rationality.
Any animal whatever, endowed with well-marked social
instincts, the parental and filial affections being
here included, would inevitably acquire a moral
sense..AS SOON AS ITS INTELLECTUAL POWERS HAD BECOME
AS WELL DEVELOPED..AS IN MAN (Darwin) [my emphasis]
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- No, Phil, I also believe that "limited" is the proper term for what
animal experiments can reveal about human consciousness (the "feeling"
of emotions). That is better than what is so often done now: assuming
the only animal who can speak human language is the only animal with
consciousness...because he (she) says so.
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "Phil Roberts, Jr."
> clarence_sonny_williams wrote:
> > Phil,
> > I was not making any personal judgments about anything you
> mentioned about your grief over rejection.
> Heavens no! That was centuries ago. :)
> I just find the experience extremely interesting from an
> evolutionary perspective. And one in which I had a wealth
> of subjective data that an external observer would not be
> privy to.
> All I did was note
> what I feel is the best source for understanding human emotions,
> or the "feeling" of those emotions (affective neuroscience)
> Oops!! I think feelings can best be studied from a first
> person perspective (with suitable precautions) and that this
> is a resource that has been woefully under appreciated. That's
> why it is not uncommon to find humongous tombs purportedly on
> human psychology without a single reference to feelings of
> worthlessness (e.g., Gleitman's 'Psychology', Cosmides and
> Tooby's 'The Adapted Mind', Eibelfeld's 'Human Ethology',
> "Discussions of scientific method have tended to stress
> problems of testability, while neglecting...those
> aspects of the universe which in some sense are most central
> and significant for the area of reality with which the
> science deals." "It has been frequently assumed that only
> those events which in principle can be simultaneously observed
> by multiple observers ... are to be accepted as constituting a
> legitimate observational basis for science." "I am suggesting
> that the more general and, to me, acceptable, objective intended
> by the criterion of interobserver agreement would be...the
> of repeatability....a more general trust in one's own experience"
> ...and the abandonment of "a corresponding uncritical acceptance
> of the significance of verbal reports." (Karl Zener - 'The
> Signifance of Experience of the Individual for the Science
> of Psychology, Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science)
> suggesting that you are wrong if you believe human emotions are
> very much different than animal emotions. Human emotions are
> assuredly different, but you must look to 2nd-level processes to
> understand why.
> Wasn't that what I was doing? Maybe I don't understand what
> that phrase is referring to. What do you mean by 2nd-level
> > Baboon behavior upon the death of a conspecific is a case in
> point. Is it different than human behavior? Sure it is, but
> in observing baboons and then other species, like elephants and
> chimps who express near-human-like grief,
> Oops! Just as I can't KNOW that chimps are more focused on
> solving PHYSICAL problems, I think there is a strong likelihood
> that what looks like GRIEF to you in elephants and chimps etc.
> might simply be puzzlement. I'm not so sure these guys actually
> have a full blown concept of death as something final. Without
> language and those myriads of subtle insights derived from
> millennia of linguistic and cultural evolution...
> we gain a better
> understanding of how human grief is derived from a biological
> I think the applicability of those studies to human thought and
> emotion will be far more limited than you do.