darwin: insufferable biding of time

…The voyage of the Beagle was, as he said himself, the formative experience of Darwin’s life. He lived hard, working in the cramped conditions of a sailing ship, rounding Cape Horn and making expeditions hundreds of miles inland through dangerous and difficult country, collecting, observing and interpreting the flora, fauna, and geological formations of South America and the islands of the Pacific and the southern Atlantic and visiting also Australia and South Africa.

—To Dawkins and Darwinians, kindness, generosity, empathy or acts of altruism are simply evolved, self-serving reactions. Anything more is, as he puts it, “misfirings, Darwinian mistakes,” which he nevertheless acknowledges are “blessed, precious mistakes.”
Altruism is merely a calculated manipulation geared towards self-aggrandizement, or smart investments that will lead to interest-laden results. In the best case scenario in a Darwinian-Dawkins society, any act of goodness beyond these parameters is simply a “misfired mistake,” perhaps blessed, but nevertheless a mistake!—Image:http://head-collection.blogspot.ca/2012_07_01_archive.html

The forty thousand mile voyage of the Beagle gave Darwin, at first hand, a bird’s-eye view of the natural world, from the tropical vegetation of the Brazilian jungle to the peaks of the Andes. It was an opportunity such as few scientists had had, though there were to be others later, including T.H. Huxley, who obtained a post similar to Darwin,s on H.M.S. Rattlesnake….

—In an interview between Professor Peter Singer and Oxford Professor Richard Dawkins for ‘The Genius of Charles Darwin’ program, Singer refers to human beings as human animals. He says that the fact that we share with them the capacity to suffer makes us the same.
This is the view of British philosopher Jeremy Bentham (1748 – 1832), who asked: What can trace the insuperable line between humans or beings that count morally and beings that don’t? If we supposedly say that it is reason, a horse is more reasonable than a human infant. But why does that matter? It counts not whether they can talk or reason, but that they can suffer.
Singer maintains that the difference between humans and animals might be that humans can see their life in a biographical sense. He doesn’t think there are any animals that can think of those kinds of things. They can’t plan for their future. Therefore one can argue that killing a creature that does not have this biographical sense and anticipation for the future it not as bad as killing a creature that does. However, he says, when it comes to suffering, they both suffer.
The fact that animals suffer has in fact been proven by British primatologist and anthropologist Jane Goodall DBE who showed that chimpanzees feel bereavement for the loss of a loved one.
Another British philosopher Bertrand Russell (1872 – 1970) says that if we take evolutionary theory to its logical conclusion one should not eat oysters or even lettuce, as there should indeed be no fundamental difference between them.
In truth, however, Singer argues, if we define a creature by the capacity to suffer pain, Russell’s argument breaks down, as lettuce does not suffer pain, and most likely oysters don’t feel pain either.—Read More:http://www.oxfordchabad.org/templates/blog/post_cdo/AID/708481/PostID/23561 image:http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archivo:George_Stubbs_013.jpg


(see link at end)…The Nihilist may well admit that accepting categorical and hypothetical imperatives may often serve the parochial interests of oneself and others. To be an ethical nihilist commits one to nothing more than the denial of objective or intrinsic moral values and categorical imperatives. .Darwinian Nihilism explains away ethics by showing that our ethical beliefs reflect dispositions very strongly selected for over long periods, which began well before the emergence of hominids, or indeed perhaps primates (vide the vampire bat). These dispositions are so “deep” that for most people most of the time, it is impossible to override them, even when it is in our individual self-interest to do so, still less when there is no self-interested reason to do so.

Hence, the Darwinian Nihilist expects that most people are conventionally moral, and that even the widespread acceptance of the truth of Darwinian Nihilism would have little or no effect on this expectation. Most of us just couldn’t persistently be mean, even if we tried. And we have no reason to try. But Nice Nihilism is hardly “a stronger, sounder version of our most important ideas.” If it is the right conclusion then we must respond to Dennett’s final question “Does Darwin’s idea turn out to be, in the end, just what we need in our attempt to preserve…the values we cherish? ” with a simple “no.” Read More:http://people.duke.edu/~alexrose/dditamler.pdf

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