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Thread: Are we animals?

  1. #1 Are we animals? 
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    Are humans like animals or are we different?

    Animals act by instinct but humans tend to have emotion and a "soul" as some people describe it.

    How is it by evolution that humans are different from animals? What made us different? And if we were envolved from apes (animals) how come we developed emotion and knowledge while other animals have not?

    Effervescent


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  3. #2 Re: Are we animals? 
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Effervescent
    Are humans like animals or are we different?
    We are not like animals we are animals.
    We are, however, different. But then all animals are different. That is what marks out one species from another.
    All the differences that distinguish man from the other animals are differences of degree, not of kind. They are quantitative, not qualitative.

    The most distinctive features (rather than notable differences) are:

    bipedal gait
    binocular, 3-colour, vision
    enlarged brain
    tool making capacity
    language skills
    omnivore par excellence
    Quote Originally Posted by Effervescent
    Animals act by instinct but humans tend to have emotion and a "soul" as some people describe it.
    Are you saying animals do onot have emotion? I would challenge that statement.
    Can you point to this soul? Can you say it is not possesed by a dolphin, an elelphant, or a bonobo?
    Quote Originally Posted by Effervescent
    How is it by evolution that humans are different from animals? What made us different?
    Changing environment places selection pressure on our physical character via our behaviour. Mutations that are favourable to these amended behaviours are selected for. (Individuals with these positive features are more likley to survive and have offspring.)
    Quote Originally Posted by Effervescent
    And if we were envolved from apes (animals) how come we developed emotion and knowledge while other animals have not?
    Observe any group of primates for one hour then tell me they have not developed emotion.


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    Ok thanks for your responce.

    I got told by a teacher at school that animals do not have emotion that they only react by instinct.

    For example a dog runs up to you all excited when you get home from work... but they only do this because they are hungry and your the one that feeds them.

    When it comes to mating season its mating season! Humans are more picky about their "mating season" and stand there and think about it.

    A Lion chases after its prey, I don't think for one second a lion thinks "Oh eating this prey will make me fat I should go on a diet"

    I got told that animals possibly do have emotion but not in the same way we do.

    Thanks for clearing that up with me, I must of got taught error.

    Effervescent
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  5. #4  
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    What your teacher did not discuss is the amount of instinct that is involved in our own actions. For example, if you support a soccer, or baseball team have you considered why?

    Ask one hundred people - let me make that one hundred males in western society - what team do you support, and a very large percentage of them will give you an answer immediately. That is a remarkable observation. Why do so many of them have a team they support?

    It cannot be because it helps them enjoy the game. Surely they could enjoy it as much just by watching it? Do they really need to be supporting one side or the other? The answer is yes, they do. This is instinct at work.

    We learn to choose football teams, but the underlying drive to identify with a group, or to support players associated with a territory - home town, or nation - is instinctive.

    I fully expect other posters to come on and disagree with some of my observations, and to support the position your teacher took. There is some room for debate on this topic. The delight of science is that with proper collection of evidence through detailed observation, and careful consideration of alternative explanations for those observations, it should be possible to arrive close to an accurate explanation.
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  6. #5  
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    How is it by evolution that humans are different from animals? What made us different? And if we were envolved from apes (animals) how come we developed emotion and knowledge while other animals have not?
    emotions do all animals have since its evolutions way to make animals do what they shall/have to. of course more advanced organism have more evolved emotions and such.

    There is several theories to explain our intelligens. For bipedalism its thought that since we went to (what is that area between dessert and forest that have almost no trees?) then its better to be higher so you can see preys/hunters at a greater distance.

    For our intelligence i´ll give you several different theories that i have heard:
    1: Womans came to see that intelligens gave a great survival chance for their children and since its easly shown on males they could pick the most creative/intelligent ones to mate with (this put that the intelligens gene is on the X chromosone wich if you ask me seems very plausible)
    2: a catastrophe happened that reduced early human population so drasticly that only the most intellgient ones survived.
    3: We began to eat more meat that our ancestors did wich gave the brain capability to develop further since plant food isnt very good as a protein/energy resource in this case
    4: Our bipedalism gave us our hands free room to evolve and to handle a hand like the one we have with precition requries a more advanced brain.

    thats all i remember now. Id think its acctualy 1,3,4 combined that gave this resullt
    I am zelos. Destroyer of planets, exterminator of life, conquerer of worlds. I have come to rule this uiniverse. And there is nothing u pathetic biengs can do to stop me

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  7. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelos
    How is it by evolution that humans are different from animals? What made us different? And if we were envolved from apes (animals) how come we developed emotion and knowledge while other animals have not?
    emotions do all animals have since its evolutions way to make animals do what they shall/have to. of course more advanced organism have more evolved emotions and such.

    There is several theories to explain our intelligens. For bipedalism its thought that since we went to (what is that area between dessert and forest that have almost no trees?) then its better to be higher so you can see preys/hunters at a greater distance.

    For our intelligence i´ll give you several different theories that i have heard:
    1: Womans came to see that intelligens gave a great survival chance for their children and since its easly shown on males they could pick the most creative/intelligent ones to mate with (this put that the intelligens gene is on the X chromosone wich if you ask me seems very plausible)
    2: a catastrophe happened that reduced early human population so drasticly that only the most intellgient ones survived.
    3: We began to eat more meat that our ancestors did wich gave the brain capability to develop further since plant food isnt very good as a protein/energy resource in this case
    4: Our bipedalism gave us our hands free room to evolve and to handle a hand like the one we have with precition requries a more advanced brain.

    thats all i remember now. Id think its acctualy 1,3,4 combined that gave this resullt
    1) The girls are attracted to the hunks - their instinct is that the strongest males may produce the strongest offspring. You can see this throughout the animal kingdom.

    On your point 2 there may well have been a drastic reduction but it is recognised that man was intelligent BEFORE this happened so your point is nonsense.

    If your point 3 was correct then Lions, Tigers and every other carnivore would be way ahead of us in intelligence as they have been eating meat longer. Eating meat meant only that we developed a little leisure time, which allowed us to mess about rubbing sticks together....

    Remember that you don't need a brain to eat grass, just 4 legs and a mouth.
    You need a brain to outwit prey. A lesson you personally would benefit from 8)

    4) Rubbish, there's something missing it was the ability to grasp branches and swing through the trees that gave us dexterity NOT standing up - since we no longer use our toes to grasp branches they are receding - that is a consequence of atanding up - that is a loss of dexterity.
    We just used our hands to pull things (like fruit) to pieces and pull the 'juicy' bits.

    The points you raise look as though they come from the 1960's (I know I read them) - You must update as science does!
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  8. #7  
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    But how is it that our species and our species only were able to make the change of intelligence but no other animal has?

    Is there different levels of intelligence among other animals that had made a separate process in evolution than we did?

    Effervescent
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  9. #8  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Effervescent
    But how is it that our species and our species only were able to make the change of intelligence but no other animal has?
    Is there different levels of intelligence among other animals that had made a separate process in evolution than we did?
    Many species are intelligent. There are different levels of intelligence.
    We cannot even agree on what constitutes intelligence amongst humans, so it is not surprising that there are debates about intelligence amongst the animals.

    Some researchers suspect that dolphins may have an intelligence as great as that of man. (If you have read the science fiction comedy, Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy you will know that man is the third most intelligent species on the planet, after the dolphins (second) and mice (first) :wink: ) The great apes display many of the problem solving, tool making and language skills that we possess, just not quite to the same extent. Certain birds, for example crows, display a remarkable level of intellect, far betond that of their avian cousins.

    Why did we develop it and not some other creature? Chance. Someone was likely to. It happened to be our ancestors. If they had not, we would orang utans, or lemurs, or gazelle: creatures that had developed other survival strategies.
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    after the dolphins (second) and mice (first) )
    WHOA!

    That's very interesting. Why is it that mice don't build houses like we do? And talk about the reason of existance like we do?

    How did science come to this conclusion?

    Who is smarter out of the cat and the dog? Most say cats are smarter but is that true?

    Effervescent
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  11. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Effervescent
    That's very interesting. Why is it that mice don't build houses like we do? And talk about the reason of existance like we do?
    At the risk of giving away some of the plot to Hitchhiker's Guide, it reveals that the mice are inter-dimensional beings of great intellect whose physical expression in our dimensions is as small furry rodents.
    As a result of an earlier billion year long experiment they had determined that the answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything, was forty two. They had arranged for the Earth to be constructed as a giant computer to determine what the question was. 8)

    Returning now to the real world: cats or dogs? It depends upon what you mean by smarter. Dogs are better at living in groups. Is that smarter? It is if you are a dog.
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  12. #11 Human 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    What your teacher did not discuss is the amount of instinct that is involved in our own actions. For example, if you support a soccer, or baseball team have you considered why?

    Ask one hundred people - let me make that one hundred males in western society - what team do you support, and a very large percentage of them will give you an answer immediately. That is a remarkable observation. Why do so many of them have a team they support?

    It cannot be because it helps them enjoy the game. Surely they could enjoy it as much just by watching it? Do they really need to be supporting one side or the other? The answer is yes, they do. This is instinct at work.

    We learn to choose football teams, but the underlying drive to identify with a group, or to support players associated with a territory - home town, or nation - is instinctive.

    I fully expect other posters to come on and disagree with some of my observations, and to support the position your teacher took. There is some room for debate on this topic. The delight of science is that with proper collection of evidence through detailed observation, and careful consideration of alternative explanations for those observations, it should be possible to arrive close to an accurate explanation.
    In considering animal behavior, does ritual envelop instinct and intelligence? That is, widespread human instinct "masquerading" in temporary sanctioned forms and rituals that direct these instinctual processes "intelligently" ?

    Also, I have recall genetic research on human population bottlenecks to elaborate further on Zelo's input (coincident with the Tambora eruption), but am unsure about linking it with human intellectual developments.

    On the other hand, I think bipedal locomotion does coincide with intelligence. A theory of early water wading humans inspires this where
    an elevated vista helps in evaluating distant terrain and consequently time, so foresight could arise along with the potential for higher abstract thought.
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  13. #12 Re: Human 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grey_matter5
    In considering animal behavior, does ritual envelop instinct and intelligence? That is, widespread human instinct "masquerading" in temporary sanctioned forms and rituals that direct these instinctual processes "intelligently" ?
    In my opinion, very definitely yes. This occurs at multiples levels, from the individual, to the largest cultural structures - nations and governments. I may be interpreting ritual in a much broader sense than you. I take it to mean any formalised response to a situation that has become embedded in a culture or sub-culture. I think one could take almost any habit that is in common use and demonstrate a plausible
    basis in instinct.
    Quote Originally Posted by Grey_matter5
    Also, I have recall genetic research on human population bottlenecks to elaborate further on Zelo's input (coincident with the Tambora eruption), but am unsure about linking it with human intellectual developments.
    I think you are right to be uncertain. It appears that the consequences of the Tambora eruption reduced the global population to less than 10,000. It is difficult to see why the harsh conditions should have especially favoured intelligence. It is possible, but it is hardly conclusive.
    The bulk of our intellectual development as a species had already occured, and the explosion of language and culture was still thirty thousand years in the future. It seems more likely that Tambora was an event that we were lucky to survive, rather than one we were fortunate to experience.
    (It would be interesting, though, to speculate on what effect the great reduction in human genetic variabilty may have had on the subsequent development of culture and rise of civilisation.)
    Quote Originally Posted by Grey_matter5
    On the other hand, I think bipedal locomotion does coincide with intelligence. A theory of early water wading humans inspires this where
    an elevated vista helps in evaluating distant terrain and consequently time, so foresight could arise along with the potential for higher abstract thought.
    I am a fan of the aquatic ape theory of human origins. The explanation of long spatial vistas inspiring long temporal vistas seems less convincing. After all, are giraffes especially noted for their contingency planning. :wink:
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  14. #13  
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    We are highly intellectually advanced animals, but some of us are quite stupid.
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    Our ability to communicate must have been a very powerful tool in our development.
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  16. #15 Re: Human 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grey_matter5
    On the other hand, I think bipedal locomotion does coincide with intelligence. A theory of early water wading humans inspires this where
    an elevated vista helps in evaluating distant terrain and consequently time, so foresight could arise along with the potential for higher abstract thought.
    The reptiles were the first to develop bipedal locomotion however that adaptation alone did not give rise higher intelligence (at least not in the reptiles), and the earliest mammals were quadrupeds so I would have to look with trepidation on that theory. Also, the earliest men, Australopithecus, were not much more intelligent than the apes, it wasn't until the migration out of Africa into the more challenging European environment that we actually saw advances in the intelligence of man.
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    Our ability to communicate must have been a very powerful tool in our development.
    It is in fact what makes us different from animals. Animals cannot describe their thoughts, humans can.

    Can animals write down on a peice of paper how they are fealing?
    Obviously the answer is no, so we are different from animals.

    Though, Homo Abilis was an animal with the fact that he could not write n'either write or even express himself by voice.



    By the way Ophiolite, I'm starting to like your french quotations!
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  18. #17 Re: Are we animals? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Effervescent
    Are humans like animals or are we different?
    We are organisms. I don't know what the term “animals” means precisely, but I think this is something you can discus. For example; are bacteria animals? I’d say no, and nor are Humans. We have developed something that the organisms in the category animals don’t have, though in much we are the same. We have the same basic needs as most animals do: food, sleep, safety (and perhaps a social aspect). Tough because we have tended to the most of our basic needs we can go further. Most humans can get food, sleep and a safe place to be. Animals have to try harder to achieve these needs. This might be the biggest difference, not the intelligence.

    For the question: ‘why could we get that why animals not?’ I don’t have a direct answer. Evolution has had many strange sides this could be just one of them.

    I’d like to here any comment for I’m not sure about what I said myself.
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    Quote Originally Posted by L.E.A.P.
    Our ability to communicate must have been a very powerful tool in our development.
    It is in fact what makes us different from animals. Animals cannot describe their thoughts, humans can.

    Can animals write down on a peice of paper how they are fealing?
    Obviously the answer is no, so we are different from animals.

    Though, Homo Abilis was an animal with the fact that he could not write n'either write or even express himself by voice.

    !
    I’m am sure that animals can communicate with each other!! They just don’t use word etc. to describe their feelings but they use body language. Though because they haven’t achieved in their basic needs so far, they don’t have a need to communicate with ten thousands of words. Al they have to tell is I’m hungry, angry, scared etc.
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  20. #19  
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    We have all the same organs as animals.
    We share most of our DNA with animals (that's not a dig at the Welsh!).
    We have all the same basic need as animals.


    If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck....
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    If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck...
    ...it's dinner for two.
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  22. #21  
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaveatLector

    If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck...
    ...it's dinner for two.
    Not wishing to be shot, I'll stop 'waddling' then and disguise my voice....
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    Are we animals?...hahahahahahahaha...
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  24. #23  
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    Quote Originally Posted by ;31200
    Quote Originally Posted by Zelos
    How is it by evolution that humans are different from animals? What made us different? And if we were envolved from apes (animals) how come we developed emotion and knowledge while other animals have not?
    emotions do all animals have since its evolutions way to make animals do what they shall/have to. of course more advanced organism have more evolved emotions and such.

    There is several theories to explain our intelligens. For bipedalism its thought that since we went to (what is that area between dessert and forest that have almost no trees?) then its better to be higher so you can see preys/hunters at a greater distance.

    For our intelligence i´ll give you several different theories that i have heard:
    1: Womans came to see that intelligens gave a great survival chance for their children and since its easly shown on males they could pick the most creative/intelligent ones to mate with (this put that the intelligens gene is on the X chromosone wich if you ask me seems very plausible)
    2: a catastrophe happened that reduced early human population so drasticly that only the most intellgient ones survived.
    3: We began to eat more meat that our ancestors did wich gave the brain capability to develop further since plant food isnt very good as a protein/energy resource in this case
    4: Our bipedalism gave us our hands free room to evolve and to handle a hand like the one we have with precition requries a more advanced brain.

    thats all i remember now. Id think its acctualy 1,3,4 combined that gave this resullt
    1) The girls are attracted to the hunks - their instinct is that the strongest males may produce the strongest offspring. You can see this throughout the animal kingdom. Actually women select mates which best suit their mating strategy - this doesn't necessarily mean the strongest. Most women tend to prefer mates which will be able to provide resources, and provide a good environment for her and her offspring. However, when the number of women taking this strategy gets too large. The 'Sexy Son' Strategy becomes more popular - which would be seeking out the 'strongest' mate. It actually isn't the strongest, however - it's the mate who is most attractive, and healthy, etc. This strategy tends to be short-term.

    On your point 2 there may well have been a drastic reduction but it is recognised that man was intelligent BEFORE this happened so your point is nonsense.

    If your point 3 was correct then Lions, Tigers and every other carnivore would be way ahead of us in intelligence as they have been eating meat longer. Eating meat meant only that we developed a little leisure time, which allowed us to mess about rubbing sticks together.... Taking meat into the diet actually did provide our ancestors with more intelligence, but this was long before humans had ever existed. They were apes that migrated from the forests and into the eastern lowlands of Africa. It wasn't specifically meat, but rather a well-balanced diet that included protein - which provided an excellent situation to develop intelligence.

    Remember that you don't need a brain to eat grass, just 4 legs and a mouth.
    You need a brain to outwit prey. A lesson you personally would benefit from 8)

    4) Rubbish, there's something missing it was the ability to grasp branches and swing through the trees that gave us dexterity NOT standing up - since we no longer use our toes to grasp branches they are receding - that is a consequence of atanding up - that is a loss of dexterity.
    We just used our hands to pull things (like fruit) to pieces and pull the 'juicy' bits. While our ancestors already had the advantage of dexterity, the big leap forward in dexterity was the development of the fully opposable thumb. Which also developed in the Eastern Lowlands of Africa. It was the change in environment that fostered this development, had nothing to do with swinging in trees.

    The points you raise look as though they come from the 1960's (I know I read them) - You must update as science does!
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    with the advent of the ice age, our evolution took a dynamic turn from Australopithecus afarensis to homo sapiens sapiens
    I suspect that it was the extreems of climate that led to our rather rapid evolution into the animals we are today
    for lack of a better phrase, we are the Lords of fire(energy)
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    Quote Originally Posted by gottspieler View Post
    Are we animals?...hahahahahahahaha...
    Why resurrect a six year old thread? And then make no meaningful contribution?
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by gottspieler View Post
    Are we animals?...hahahahahahahaha...
    Why resurrect a six year old thread? And then make no meaningful contribution?
    He was behaving like a dog, digging up a bone, then chewing on it. I wonder if he begs. So with that he answered our long last question if we are animals. Some of us are . Others are like those some.
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    No, we are some magical creature that was brought for no reason by a man named Jesus Christ.

    Yes we are animals.
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    With bravery and recognition that we are harbingers of our destiny and with a paragon of virtue.
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    I recently learned that many other animals besides humans, use and make tools.


    Like a crow. A crow is actually able to beat many primate species, in mental tests using tools.

    Then sea otters use tools to open clams.

    Hawks or eagles bring turtles high into the air, and drop them in hard areas, in order to break the shell. I believe scientists think, that these birds give great thought, to how high they bring the turtle, in order to get a perfect shell crack.



    And then there chimps.
    1. Chimps use tools to catch termites.
    2. Chimps use (hand made) spears to hunt (kill) other smaller primate species.


    All of the above makes me think, that the use of tools, is not something that separates humans from other animals.


    Perhaps people should say "humans use of (complex) tools" separates them from other animals.
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    I have heard this question over and over again. It reminds me of the question what was first, the chicken or the egg. My take on this is that the human is the center point of its own gravity just as the animal must be the center point of its own gravity. This means that every thing and no thing pases through the human for its own preceptions and interpretations. When one thinks of an animal, the thought wave passes through the human and the interpritation comes from the human. The animal cannot interprit itself to you. What I mean is, if you interprit the animal to be saying to you that it is hungry by its barking, then you have attributed common sense to the animal. How can a life form be different on the planet when the conditions are the same.
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    There are so many answers to so many questions. How can one know when one is right or wrong. The only answer to humans questions are the answers that human gives itself. How can animals not have emotions when humans have it. How would you know when another human have emotions, is it not your perception that dictates that. One should know and be satisfied with ones own answers because no one can confirm or disapprove but oneself.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mother/father View Post
    How can a life form be different on the planet when the conditions are the same.
    They can not. Thus the conditions are not the same.
    Growing up, i marveled at star-trek's science, and ignored the perfect society. Now, i try to ignore their science, and marvel at the society.

    Imagine, being able to create matter out of thin air, and not coming up with using drones for boarding hostile ships. Or using drones to defend your own ship. Heck, using drones to block energy attacks, counterattack or for surveillance. Unless, of course, they are nano-machines in your blood, which is a billion times more complex..
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    People should look more at "instinct" as a drive, tendency, or coercion to do a certain thing.

    Most fish have the instinct to feed whenever they see food. With that said, a fish will not dart for food that's in the presence of a much larger, much more aggressive fish.
    A fish has a stronger instinct to avoid danger.

    A dog has an instinct to chase after and retrieve what is thrown, but a dog will not run off a cliff.
    A dog has a stronger instinct to not walk off a cliff.

    A human being has the instinct to reproduce, but a human will not go around raping everybody.
    A human has a stronger instinct to care about the feelings of other humans. Humans have an instinct to be empathic by nature.

    Empathic people: RSA Animate - The Empathic Civilisation - YouTube

    Somebody should bump this thread in 2018.
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    The human animal has instincts. And other animals do have emotions. The sooner we stop thinking the Sun shines out of our a$$, the better.
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    Your teacher is a bloody idiot and needs to go back to school. Have you ever seen video footage of an elephant pack reacting to the death of a member? or the fact that Dolphins have sex for pleasure just like humans do? What about the fact... Think for yourself... Do independent research... And do NOT believe everything they teach you in school...
    Not all who wander are lost... Some of us just misplaced our destination.

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    I wonder if the question should be "are we animals?" Maybe is it a question of classification? Do humans have emotion?Perhaps humans do have emotions after humans define emotions. If that is so, then the question of how war is defined might not exist...don't animals also fight amongst themselves and also kill others outside their group or species? Preditor/prey, similar to humans. However, if a person wanted to invite themselves to dinner with a friend, would the person want a giraffe to cook the dinner or would it be the desire for the giraffe to be the dinner? Whatsmore is could the giraffe even cook the dinner? Or is it that the giraffe could only be the dinner? Accordingly, primates are 99% genetically similar to humans. Also, 99% of the world's wealth is held by 1% of the world's population. So the question is how broad is the difference between 1%, 99%,and 100%. So again, is it a question of "are humans animals" or is it how humans classify themselves in relation to animals and to themselves?
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    A book like "Alex and Me", about a African Grey used to change the way the science world views birds. This is a few species that can tell you how they feel in your language and have their own language including some tellipathic abilities, they where dinos and are being taught to read. Another book everyone should read is "Bats Sing, Mice Giggle"on the science studies being done on the inner lives of animals of earth. If you where to look at nature as one side and all human on the other, there is not much of modern tech that nature doesn't have us beat by a long shot. When we left nature, we might have been the loosers. Going back to nature maybe the answers for some of what our scientists find so illusive.
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    One sentence: We're humans not animals.
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    comment deleted

    Reason: I tell myself all the time not to waste time with people who have zero reason, but make the mistake over and over again.
    It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wise Man View Post
    One sentence: We're humans not animals.
    One sentence: you are half right. We are humans. What is your evidence that we are not also animals? We share biochemistries, genetic makeup, embryonic development paths and behavioural patterns with animals. What do you think the distinction is?
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    Thank you John Galt
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    We are our society (information, ideas, thought, ethic, law, productivity, know-how). Without them we are just flesh. A flesh will die and nothing else (into nothingness), but a 'thought' lives on and spread like a virus (eg: gossip, racism) , and persist even long after our death, and can do unspeakable evil (eg: Nazis, pol-pot, Karl Marx, ect), or unspeakable good (eg: altruism *eg: mother theresa*, *good* nationalism, social identity *cohesion*).
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    Quote Originally Posted by msafwan View Post
    We are our society (information, ideas, thought, ethic, law, productivity, know-how). Without them we are just flesh. A flesh will die and nothing else (into nothingness), but a 'thought' lives on and spread like a virus (eg: gossip, racism) , and persist even long after our death, and can do unspeakable evil (eg: Nazis, pol-pot, Karl Marx, ect), or unspeakable good (eg: altruism *eg: mother theresa*, *good* nationalism, social identity *cohesion*).
    Isn't this extremely phylosophic? Karl Marx did not do anything evil. Racism is not an idea that spreads like a virus, it is thought by parents to judge people of their appearance. Most people are unnafected by racist thoughts of others. Mother theresa was not unspeakably good, she was a normal woman, who simply acted as a symbol, she cared... that's all.
    Growing up, i marveled at star-trek's science, and ignored the perfect society. Now, i try to ignore their science, and marvel at the society.

    Imagine, being able to create matter out of thin air, and not coming up with using drones for boarding hostile ships. Or using drones to defend your own ship. Heck, using drones to block energy attacks, counterattack or for surveillance. Unless, of course, they are nano-machines in your blood, which is a billion times more complex..
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wise Man View Post
    One sentence: We're humans not animals.
    Humans are animals. Basic taxonomy.
    Quote Originally Posted by msafwan View Post
    We are our society (information, ideas, thought, ethic, law, productivity, know-how). Without them we are just flesh. A flesh will die and nothing else (into nothingness), but a 'thought' lives on and spread like a virus (eg: gossip, racism) , and persist even long after our death, and can do unspeakable evil (eg: Nazis, pol-pot, Karl Marx, ect), or unspeakable good (eg: altruism *eg: mother theresa*, *good* nationalism, social identity *cohesion*).
    Just because our species is highly social does not mean that we are not a species of the kingdom Animalia. What you refer to is culture, which does not embody who we are, but is an aspect of who we are.
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    My mother thinks the sky is blue because its the reflection of the ocean, and she also thinks that we are not animals.
    With bravery and recognition that we are harbingers of our destiny and with a paragon of virtue.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Japith View Post
    My mother thinks the sky is blue because its the reflection of the ocean, and she also thinks that we are not animals.
    Seems like a huge leap from, "God pained the sky blue", But still far from, "Our athmosphere reflects blue light". Your mother still thinks with animals you mean, "being one who have no restraint and no manners". We are different then most animals, but biologically we are identical. We differ as much from mice, as a horse does.

    The question, are we animals should not be based on the feeling that we think we are superior to them. It is a classification, and with a classification comes a fact, not an opinion.

    So your mother thinks she is better then an animal. It's paradoxal when she acually is an animal, so she thinks she is better then herself. Someone who thinks she's better then herself should know this isn't possible, unless she's not thinking. And someone who is not thinking is less then most humans. And thus she is an animal, but less then most humans, as she can't comprehend a paradox.

    So teach her, that what she's saying is wrong, or live with the idea that she will always contradict herself with this.
    Growing up, i marveled at star-trek's science, and ignored the perfect society. Now, i try to ignore their science, and marvel at the society.

    Imagine, being able to create matter out of thin air, and not coming up with using drones for boarding hostile ships. Or using drones to defend your own ship. Heck, using drones to block energy attacks, counterattack or for surveillance. Unless, of course, they are nano-machines in your blood, which is a billion times more complex..
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    I think we are humans we are above animals .As long as we belive in equality freedome peace we are above if not we are low then animals
    Seeing the unseen solving the unsolved and linking the hidden is what intelligence is all about.
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    I think we are humans we are above animals .
    No. We are an especially gifted and privileged kind of mammal.

    Our intelligence and our social organisation makes us very special. But for as long as we reproduce sexually in much the same way as any dolphin or zebra or gorilla and human females produce breast milk of a specific nutritional composition for our infants just as whales, cows and meerkats do for theirs, we are still animals.

    If we were different from or above animals, we'd have an entirely different biology. Which would require us to have DNA unlike any other animal species - and we don't, so we aren't.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
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    Why is this in the Behavior and Psychology section? :/
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    Quote Originally Posted by Philovitist View Post
    Why is this in the Behavior and Psychology section? :/
    through many universities this response was always my least favorite:

    Philo: "That's a good question"

    answer(?)
    Hubris and arrogance ofttimes cloud judgement to extreem depths of denial which preclude understanding our animal natures, and that is a mental illness.
    40 years ago, the thought that we might be influenced by pheremomones flew in the face of convictions that "we were above that".

    (alternate answer) arf arf
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    From the perspective of evolutionary biology, humans are clearly animals. Arguing otherwise would be foolish.

    However, I think it's important to note that many people don't look at the world from such a perspective and so use the word differently. Colloquially the word has a meaning that is quite different from its scientific meaning. People like having a word that can be used to distinguish man from beast, as it were. It's just unfortunate that this can lead to confusion and be potentially misleading in certain situations.

    Equally, it's hard for some one with knowledge of evolutionary biology to ever see the world from the perspective of some one who doesn't - most would choke at the idea of describing humans as anything other than animals.
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    This is a science forum so we should observe the scientific definition, regardless of what any individual believes. You could think we are or we aren't because of this and that, but here we have to understand the definitive approach. Last time I checked, Homo sapiens (humans) were part of the kingdom Animalia (animals). So, humans are animals. Period.

    Why are we animals? Because we fit the characteristic criteria of the definition *animal*. We are Eukaryatic, heterotrophic organisms that are motile whose cells lack a rigid cell wall. If we violated these main characteristics we wouldn't be animals, but we don't. Just because we're taxonomically animals does not change the fact that we are highly intelligent and social organisms... no more than a Monach King is reduced to peasant status just because they are both humans biologically.
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    On a note, I think the problem stems from the fact that some people tend to associate a set with a specific subset of that set, thinking all elements in the set should have the characteristics of that specific group. The thing is, in taxonomy, no one subgroup could properly represent the characteristics of all the taxon's members. Everyday people hear animals and think "derp. Dog! Cow! Giraffe!!", and now all of a sudden you have to be like those specific species (which really are an incredibly small percentage of Animalia) or you're not an animal.
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    mesage and metamessage confusion, see the work of r.d. laing
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    There is absolutely no doubt of the fact that we are animals. It is a scientific certainty.

    However, we are entitled to think we are very special animals. We are unique in the animal kingdom in many different ways. We have the biggest brain for our size (except for very small mammals, which have, after all, very small brains). We are the only primate to walk upright. We have the smallest gut and the flattest teeth for our size of any primate. We are the only terrestrial mammal in our size range who is functionally hairless. Along with the horse, we are first equal for stamina among terrestrial mammals. We are the only animal with a highly developed language capability. We are the most technologically capable animal. We are the only animal to have made our home on all continents and major islands, without help from any other animal. We thrive under all climatic conditions. We live on an all-meat diet (Inuits) and every combination of foods through to a vegan diet.

    Humans are the most flexible, and adaptable animal ever to exist. So yes, we are definitely animals. And yes, we are very special animals.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    Humans are the most flexible, and adaptable animal ever to exist. So yes, we are definitely animals. And yes, we are very special animals.
    I disagree. Rats.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ikrash tariq View Post
    As long as we belive in equality freedome peace we are above if not we are low then animals
    I think that we as individuals are animals. Equality, peace, etc. are properties of human groups (humanity). It's these group accomplishments that really set us apart. I believe it fair to say that group properties like ...I dunno, Toshiba Corporation or a public library system... are so novel that humanity (not individual humans) is in a class apart and above the animal kingdom.

    The debate is confused when "humans" means "individual humans" to one person, and "humans collectively" to another, i.e the parts or the whole.
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    I disagree. Rats.
    Rats depend on humans. For example : rats are present in all continents only because humans have transported them. Without humans, rats would be much less successful.
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    That just shows how versatile and adaptable they are. They have latched on to a convenient transport system, but avoided the trouble of having to create it themselves.
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    I'd argue humans are more omnivorous than rats. Given the ability, would rats create a supermarket tea aisle with 300+ varieties to choose from? Would they desire to try weasel-pooped coffee beans so bad to make it so? I guess that given the choice rats would all just eat the same nutritionally balanced kibble day in and day out... this calls for experiment.
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    I will concede that, to our knowledge, no group of rats has ever created a reality TV program. But I just see that as another one of their strengths.
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    It would be interesting to know if rats will share the next major human expansion - off planet Earth. I doubt it, since we are getting pretty good at excluding them when we try. When humans occupy half the galaxy, where will the rats be?

    I also do not think rats have a great future. Humanity is at the beginning of a revolution in robotics. Imagine the rat killer of the future. A fast moving and small robot, able to go anywhere a rat goes, with many senses to track them, and a cyanide needle for the finale.
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    We might have made rats less adaptive through centuries of rat poisoning: Modern rats are unlikely to eat unfamiliar food until they have smelled that food on the living breath of another rat. A few ways to interpret this, though. Again, it'd be interesting to test experimentally if humans innately follow a similar eating code as the rats.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    It would be interesting to know if rats will share the next major human expansion - off planet Earth. I doubt it, since we are getting pretty good at excluding them when we try. When humans occupy half the galaxy, where will the rats be?

    I also do not think rats have a great future. Humanity is at the beginning of a revolution in robotics. Imagine the rat killer of the future. A fast moving and small robot, able to go anywhere a rat goes, with many senses to track them, and a cyanide needle for the finale.
    Why not be better for the enviroment, place a meat(rat)grinder on front of it. It'll give us free meat.

    So isn't the question, are humans animals, now are rat's animals, as they are even more adaptable then humans. And are cockroaches animals, because they can survive nuclear fallout. And are dinosaurs animals, because they are extinct, or are mosquito's animals, because they are on a totally different scale of lethality and annoyance then all the other animals.

    I hope most get why i typed that though, not the most obvious reason for n00bs though.

    Troll out.
    Growing up, i marveled at star-trek's science, and ignored the perfect society. Now, i try to ignore their science, and marvel at the society.

    Imagine, being able to create matter out of thin air, and not coming up with using drones for boarding hostile ships. Or using drones to defend your own ship. Heck, using drones to block energy attacks, counterattack or for surveillance. Unless, of course, they are nano-machines in your blood, which is a billion times more complex..
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    I disagree that rats are more adaptable.

    When did you last see a rat living in an igloo? Or in Antarctica? Or travel to the moon? Or crossing the desert?
    Personally, I have killed dozens of the little beggars, with poison and traps, and my patch of rain forest is now rat free.

    They are very adaptable, of course, and have opportunistically made use of the greater capabilities of humans. But their days are numbered. He he he.
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    the only thing that separates us from animals is our ability to think and understand our suroundings. emotion plays no part iin it. although emotion makes us better and athe same time worse. our emotions allow us to live in societies together. but they also make our egos wich is the worse part
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    emotion plays no part iin it
    I'm not so sure of that. Right now I'm very attached to the idea that we are ...............

    Feeling animals that think rather than thinking animals that feel.

    The idea that we are rational, logical thinkers who make the error of letting our feelings get in the way is pretty dangerous. We're far better off if we acknowledge, right up front, that we are a whole heap better at rationalising - coming up with explanations and elaborations of ideas that we've come to by instinct, habit or emotion - than we are at dispassionate, rational thought unencumbered by personal convictions, biases or ideologies.

    After all, that's what the scientific method does for us. It doesn't presume that scientists are supremely rational beings who can divorce themselves from their own thoughts and feelings and thereby make error-free, unchallengeable conclusions. It requires scientists to put their findings and their methods out there for others to analyse, criticise, develop or maybe demolish. Scientists are fallible people like all other people. But science does its best to minimise those entirely predictable failings of the people who do scientific work.
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    Nice response given the muddled understanding of emotion's relationship to cognition.
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    I would like to think (though it may be cognitive dissonance) that my posts on this forum suggest a rational mind capable of logical thinking, construction of organised arguments and objective assessment of situations and persons. If this is the impression I have given than I apologise for the deceit. I am, as adelady has suggested, governed primarily by my instincts, drives, hormones, environmental history and what I had for breakfast. Any resemblance to a dispassionate intellect is purely coincidental.
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    What's the alternative? Vegetable?
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    Maybe the real question might be what could be in a thousand or so years with some of the research chimps and other research animals. Some had grownup in the human equation then released in the wild boosting evolution . Do you who think humans not a animal believe humans the only species capable of evolveing to fit your definition?
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    That's asking what is a "person". Unresolved, though not too badly pressing yet.

    When I see a bonobo playing video games or hiking with a backpack my heart tells me it's a person. But when I recall how we split in the first place, I think it maybe more just and dignified (for both parties) to continue the experiment our common ancestors initiated. Besides, the way we are, just keeping all homo sapiens together has been challenging enough... and chimps have the same problem. We great apes seem to have an innate clannish tendency to war and even genocide. That's "bad" yet willful division also drove our evolution didn't it? Hmf. Should we honor (or punish) the xenophobia and racism of their ancestors? Ethical conundrum!
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    We should honor it.

    As in every case, we can only learn, if we dare to make mistakes. The reason there is peace now, is because we know what war would be like. And there is an extra barrier. As he who would like to wage war for profit, will be ransacked by the UN. No country will be as stupid to do this, without thinking it can actually win.

    Assath will want to keep the peace with every other country around it, as it is having trouble dealing with rebels as it is right now. Even in this magnitude that it has to play the genocide card. One that has not been played anywhere for around 15 years..
    Growing up, i marveled at star-trek's science, and ignored the perfect society. Now, i try to ignore their science, and marvel at the society.

    Imagine, being able to create matter out of thin air, and not coming up with using drones for boarding hostile ships. Or using drones to defend your own ship. Heck, using drones to block energy attacks, counterattack or for surveillance. Unless, of course, they are nano-machines in your blood, which is a billion times more complex..
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    We are definitely animals!! No one can say that other animals doesn't have any emotions or knowledge! Just because a cat or a dog or a squirrel cannot convey their emotions in a language understandable by the so called superior humans does not make them emotionless or thoughtless!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by msafwan View Post
    We are our society (information, ideas, thought, ethic, law, productivity, know-how). Without them we are just flesh. A flesh will die and nothing else (into nothingness), but a 'thought' lives on and spread like a virus (eg: gossip, racism) , and persist even long after our death, and can do unspeakable evil (eg: Nazis, pol-pot, Karl Marx, ect), or unspeakable good (eg: altruism *eg: mother theresa*, *good* nationalism, social identity *cohesion*).
    I keep saying this, and will continue as long as necessary. The words "good" and "evil" do not belong in a science discussion. They are simply not scientific concepts.
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    ... Depends on what sense of "Good" or "Evil" you're talking about. Definitely not the way religions present them, but there are more objective meanings. If something is very reprehensible to my ethics (like what the Nazis did), I'd call it evil. And I mean nothing like Satan, curses, evil spirits, etc. It's a proper, objective definition.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370 View Post
    I keep saying this, and will continue as long as necessary. The words "good" and "evil" do not belong in a science discussion. They are simply not scientific concepts.
    If I may play Devil's advocate for a moment, then I must disagree.

    Many individuals, organisations, religions and other social groupings have a concept of good and evil. While their defintions will differ both in content and precision, there will be certain qualities that are common and others that are uncommon, or unqiue to an individual or group,. As such these views are subject to observation, investigation and statistical analysis. That is science.

    Beyond that we can assess to what extent the concepts of good an evil are the expression of fundamental instinctive drives or tendencies, and to what extent they are cultural. More science.

    I rest my case.
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    Quote Originally Posted by halorealm View Post
    ... Depends on what sense of "Good" or "Evil" you're talking about. Definitely not the way religions present them, but there are more objective meanings. If something is very reprehensible to my ethics (like what the Nazis did), I'd call it evil. And I mean nothing like Satan, curses, evil spirits, etc. It's a proper, objective definition.
    There is nothing objective about your ethics, and you cannot prove, scientifically, that the Nazis were reprehensible.

    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt
    Many individuals, organisations, religions and other social groupings have a concept of good and evil. While their defintions will differ both in content and precision, there will be certain qualities that are common and others that are uncommon, or unqiue to an individual or group,. As such these views are subject to observation, investigation and statistical analysis. That is science.

    Beyond that we can assess to what extent the concepts of good an evil are the expression of fundamental instinctive drives or tendencies, and to what extent they are cultural. More science.
    Yes, but nobody here ever discusses it in that context. Generally, people think their moral system is objective, like Halorealm does, and use it in that manner.
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    Sociology is a science... Barely... But a science still...

    Most of our comprehension of good and evil is equal. We know what is good and what is bad.. And the science studied it in a larger group..
    Growing up, i marveled at star-trek's science, and ignored the perfect society. Now, i try to ignore their science, and marvel at the society.

    Imagine, being able to create matter out of thin air, and not coming up with using drones for boarding hostile ships. Or using drones to defend your own ship. Heck, using drones to block energy attacks, counterattack or for surveillance. Unless, of course, they are nano-machines in your blood, which is a billion times more complex..
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zwolver View Post
    Sociology is a science... Barely... But a science still...

    Most of our comprehension of good and evil is equal.
    Equal to what?
    We know what is good and what is bad..
    How do we know?
    And the science studied it in a larger group..
    What group?
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    And the science studied it in a larger group.
    Citation needed. Several citations needed.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
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    Kind of cool that this thread started 2006 and then suddenly nobody interested for some 6 years a
    and now 2012 then many writes their responses.

    We sure are animals unless that word has changed meaning to mean lacking empathy or something.
    Even humans are not alone having empathy though and some humans seems to have problems with
    acting empathically despite them having knowledge

    Are we a group animal or like Orangutan that is almost solitary? Are we like some Hyenas whom
    seem very aggressive and competitive?
    Hyena - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Some of us maybe are like Bonobos in that we are cuddly to please others Haha that can
    end up very badly of the other are hierarchically strict and need to keep distance to feel superior.

    I rest my case I know that we are animals but what kind of animals are we?

    What is it like to be a human. Maybe the thread should have that title instead?
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    Quote Originally Posted by JackMonedula View Post
    I rest my case I know that we are animals but what kind of animals are we?
    An excellent question. Perhaps two answers are these.
    1) We are an animal which is capable of asking this question.
    2) We are animal which is interested in the answer.
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    3) We are an animal that is overly divided in it's opinion, incite to war and radicalism.
    Growing up, i marveled at star-trek's science, and ignored the perfect society. Now, i try to ignore their science, and marvel at the society.

    Imagine, being able to create matter out of thin air, and not coming up with using drones for boarding hostile ships. Or using drones to defend your own ship. Heck, using drones to block energy attacks, counterattack or for surveillance. Unless, of course, they are nano-machines in your blood, which is a billion times more complex..
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    I have never heard an argument that humans are not animals that was not from a religious point of view, so yeah, humans are animals.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Effervescent View Post
    Are humans like animals or are we different?

    Animals act by instinct but humans tend to have emotion and a "soul" as some people describe it.

    How is it by evolution that humans are different from animals? What made us different? And if we were envolved from apes (animals) how come we developed emotion and knowledge while other animals have not?

    Effervescent

    I am an artist .I feel "offended " by this thread .Just kidding .

    Well, art ,including literature and music, science ,[hilosophy, free will and so on do differentiate us from animals , i hope .
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    Quote Originally Posted by anticorncob28 View Post
    I have never heard an argument that humans are not animals that was not from a religious point of view, so yeah, humans are animals.
    In which sense ?, please .

    I do agree with you that humans do share some common traits with animals , at the instinctive level at least,but to say that we are animals, i really can't quite follow that .

    Animals do not have art literature music philosophy and so on ,for instance
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pandora's Box View Post
    I do agree with you that humans do share some common traits with animals , at the instinctive level at least,but to say that we are animals, i really can't quite follow that .

    Animals do not have art literature music philosophy and so on ,for instance
    Would you argue that bats aren't animals because they have the ability to calculate the speed and direction of a moth and intercept it in darkness? Our unique capabilities, all of which are just extensions of what we see in many other complex animals, do not exclude us from being animals.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Pandora's Box View Post
    I do agree with you that humans do share some common traits with animals , at the instinctive level at least,but to say that we are animals, i really can't quite follow that .

    Animals do not have art literature music philosophy and so on ,for instance
    Would you argue that bats aren't animals because they have the ability to calculate the speed and direction of a moth and intercept it in darkness? Our unique capabilities, all of which are just extensions of what we see in many other complex animals, do not exclude us from being animals.

    Bats do not do that consciously but instinctively .

    That's no valid comparison then .

    Show me why we are animals then ?

    I think that we are unique and cannot be compared to any animals, even though we share some traits with them and even though some animals do surpass us in some other traits like seeing , like speed and so on
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    Quote Originally Posted by Effervescent View Post
    Are humans like animals or are we different?

    Animals act by instinct but humans tend to have emotion and a "soul" as some people describe it.

    How is it by evolution that humans are different from animals? What made us different? And if we were evolved from apes (animals) how come we developed emotion and knowledge while other animals have not?

    Effervescent
    Have you considered what humans would be like if they didn't have hands to make and use tools and didn't have vocal cords to invent a language with, and another species who did was trying to figure out if we had emotions and complex thoughts?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pandora's Box View Post
    Bats do not do that consciously but instinctively .

    That's no valid comparison then .

    Show me why we are animals then ?

    I think that we are unique and cannot be compared to any animals, even though we share some traits with them and even though some animals do surpass us in some other traits like seeing , like speed and so on
    Animals are multicellular, eukaryotic organisms of the kingdom Animalia or Metazoa. Humans fall into that definition of animal. Where in that definition is an exclusion for an organism that has art or literature?

    Unless you're redefining what the term animal means, then humans are most certainly animals. We may be exceptionally unique in many ways, but we do not transcend the biological understanding of the term 'animal'.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pandora's Box View Post
    Bats do not do that consciously but instinctively .

    That's no valid comparison then.
    Because you are stacking the deck with your species unique ability and claiming it makes you somehow apart--while discounting other animal unique properties. Your criteria are biased, arbitrary and non-scientific. At best you could argue we are a subset of animals.


    Show me why we are animals then ?
    That's as simple as looking at our cell structure--we are absolutely and irrefutably animals, with the same deep evolutionary roots to going back to some mobile colonial protistas every other animal on this planet that we know of.
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    anthropologist and archaeologist have been discussing what it is that makes us unique.
    bipedalism, opposing thumb, etc...
    My take is FIRE
    It is our mastery of fire that has allowed us to become fundamentally different from other animals.
    We are the lords of fire.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pandora's Box View Post
    Bats do not do that consciously but instinctively .

    That's no valid comparison then .

    Show me why we are animals then ?
    Whoa! I thought you said you were an artist. Do you mean each brush stroke, or each hammer blow, or each added semi-quaver, is placed by rational, conscious decision? If so you are like no artist I have ever encountered.

    We are animals because we are descended from animals, because we have the phsyiology, biochemistry, metabolism, genetic coding system, skeletal structure and much more of animals. We have behavioural patterns echoed in our cousin primates. Are we different from other animals? Of course we are, but a duck differs from a walrus. They are still both animals.
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