Adaptive Quotes (displaying: 1 - 14 of 14 quotes )
But complex animals had obtained their adaptive flexibility at some cost--they had traded one dependency for another. It was no longer necessary to change their bodies to adapt, because now their adaptation was behavior, socially determined. That behavior required learning. In a sense, among higher animals adaptive fitness was no longer transmitted to the next generation by DNA at all. It was now carried by teaching.
Thinking is computation, I claim, but that does not mean that the computer is a good metaphor for the mind. The mind is a set of modules, but the modules are not encapsulated boxes or circumscribed swatches on the surface of the brain. The organization of our mental modules comes from our genetic program, but that does not mean that there is a gene for every trait or that learning is less important than we used to think. The mind is an adaptation designed by natural selection, but that does not mean that everything we think, feel, and do is biologically adaptive. We evolved from apes, but that does not mean we have the same minds as apes. And the ultimate goal of natural selection is to propagate genes, but that does not mean that the ultimate goal of people is to propagate genes.
That's the paradox: the only time most people feel alive is when they're suffering, when something overwhelms their ordinary, careful armour, and the naked child is flung out onto the world. That's why the things that are worst to undergo are best to remember. But when that child gets buried away under their adaptive and protective shells—he becomes one of the walking dead, a monster.
hat’s the paradox: the only time most people feel alive is when they’re suffering, when something overwhelms their ordinary, careful armour, and the naked child is flung out onto the world. That’s why the things that are worst to undergo are best to remember. But when that child gets buried away under their adaptive and protective shells—he becomes one of the walking dead, a monster. So when you realise you’ve gone a few weeks and haven’t felt that awful struggle of your childish self — struggling to lift itself out of its inadequacy and incompetence — you’ll know you’ve gone some weeks without meeting new challenge, and without growing, and that you’ve gone some weeks towards losing touch with yourself. The only calibration that counts is how much heart people invest, how much they ignore their fears of being hurt or caught out or humiliated. And the only thing people regret is that they did’t live boldly enough, that they didn’t invest enough heart, didn’t love enough. Nothing else really counts at all.
Not only is religion thriving, but it is thriving because it helps people to adapt and survive in the world. In his book Darwin's Cathedral, evolutionary biologist David Sloan Wilson argues that religion provides something that secular society doesn't: a vision of transcendent purpose. Consequently, religious people have a zest for life that is, in a sense, unnatural. They exhibit a hopefulness about the future that may exceed what is warranted by how the world is going. And they forge principles of morality and charity that simply make them more cohesive, adaptive, and successful than groups whose members lack this binding and elevating force.