• Question: Why is it that humans have more control over the world than other animals?

    Asked by 358bera46 to Colin, John, Kevin, Shikha, Triona on 13 Nov 2014.
    • Photo: Kevin Motherway

      Kevin Motherway answered on 13 Nov 2014:


      Well I think the answer to this is because we have higher intelligence and importantly language we can record our knowledge and pass it on and so it increases with each generation. You could think of all the humans that ever lived like parts of a super computer with each one solving a problem and passing the knowledge onto the next processor (or human being) to build on. And so our knowledge has increased with every generation and in only about 100,00 years we’ve gone from living in caves and now we’re are space faring civilisation. All other animals can certainly communicate “food here”, “Danger – lets run”, etc. but they don’t have language or the ability to record knowledge. They can certainly train their offspring how to survive or forrage for food but not Geometry!

    • Photo: Kevin Motherway

      Kevin Motherway answered on 13 Nov 2014:


      Well I think the answer to this is because we have higher intelligence and importantly language we can record our knowledge and pass it on and so it increases with each generation. You could think of all the humans that ever lived like parts of a super computer with each one solving a problem and passing the knowledge onto the next processor (or human being) to build on. And so our knowledge has increased with every generation and in only about 100,00 years we’ve gone from living in caves and now we’re are space faring civilisation. All other animals can certainly communicate “food here”, “Danger – lets run”, etc. but they don’t have language or the ability to record knowledge. They can certainly train their offspring how to survive or forrage for food but not Geometry!

      While I agree that we control certain aspects of the world, far simpler life like viruses, bacteria and fungii have the real control over the world as without them, our own bodies, the levels of nitrogen in the soil and the amount of oxygen in the air etc could change rapidly and we humans would be in big trouble pretty fast!

    • Photo: Shikha Sharma

      Shikha Sharma answered on 20 Nov 2014:


      Hi 358bera46,

      As per an on-going research on intelligence and primate brain evolution backs the idea that humans aren’t the cleverest creatures on Earth. The qualities that make human superior is they spend time in introspection, in questioning, in debates, in contemplation of the motives of their actions whereas other animals do not question why they do what they do, they simply act, react, or do not act, depending on immediate responses to any given situation. Our technology has helped us to maintain the control. In fact, our technology is the only thing keeping us at the top of the food chain because without it, we would still be running from predators.
      I read a poem that goes something like:
      Animals sing. So do we, but we make it into music.
      Animals breed. So do we, but we also make it into love..
      Animals kill. So do we, but we try to feel remorse.
      πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ Nice poem πŸ˜€ :D:D:D

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