Friday, 11 August 2017

the birds and the bees

Though I take a little exception with the assertion that humans are the only beings to have recognised the connection between sex and babies (even considering the gestation period does put a lot distance between conception and birth), I had never really appreciated how profound reproductive awareness and how defining that hallmark of humanity can be.
Evolution and our genes drive us to procreate and perhaps, achieved though realising that the consequences of the act of mating, we’ve ritualised courtship and matrimony in such ways that transcend and indeed run counter to our genetic self-interests. Certain cultural norms and taboos that are contemporary and abiding may have their origins in more socially nebulous but just as focused times and civilisation accommodates. What do you think? Was this the revelatory epiphany that led us outside of the moment and ourselves and informed our cogitative abilities? I’d suspect that a lot of thoughts and feelings, especially the repulsive and unwelcome ones of fear and anxiety, are also genetic baggage developed during far more fraught days. The ability to understand outcomes and plan for the future (even if the biological process remained a mystery and prone to superstition and visitations from the gods) girds the imagination and allows humans to not only work on their own pedigree but also to practise animal husbandry and agriculture—another subversion of natural selection—and advance to the point (we still need to be humble and recognise that we’re quickly getting into uncharted, untested territory) where we can create wholly synthetic beings.