evolutionary significance of emotions !!

John H. johnhkm at netsprintXXXX.net.au
Mon Feb 21 01:01:13 EST 2000

<cerebrolat at my-deja.com> wrote in message
news:88p1dr$g32$1 at nnrp1.deja.com...
> In article <88e6a4$1h13$1 at news1.wire.net.au>,
>   "John H." <johnhkm at netsprintXXXX.net.au> wrote:
> > Clearly because depression is associated with creativity and has much
> more primitive but probably more powerful functions, like making you
> want to stay inside and conserve energy because its snowing like hell
> outside and maybe it will stay that for several months.
> I agree that under depression the tendency seems to be "wanting to stay
> inside". But in fact I cosider that as the capitulation to survival. In
> the non escapable electric shock model rats a "depressive -like"
> response,
> it translate to me as helplessness. In case of a desease, I'd agree
> about the immune system taking the relay, but for social causes it will
> not ! The guy want to go back to the uterus nirvana life or just die ...

I was referring to seasonal affective disorder, a condition more frequent
(?) in North European climates. The inescapable electric shock demonstrates
my point. In the face of danger that cannot be challenged, the best survival
is to hide.

The immune system reference was to demonstrate that evolution uses our moods
to its advantage.

> >  You are assuming that there is only one preferred cognitive style for
> all occasions and that's dangerous. Look harder, there just might be
> good reasons for feeling bad. Why is feeling good always good? Go tell
> that to the psychopath.
> Are you mad ? the biological basis of emotions is an exiting matter,
> though. For example you use terms as good and bad. Are those pointing to
> the evolutionary moral or another cultural one ? Thera are some
> questions to ask: Is the survival of the individual or the one of the
> species the main purpose of living creatures ? If is the species as it
> seems to be proven. How the behavioral rules of nature act on each
> individual to achieve this goal ?

I think in evolutionary biology you may find some argument regarding exactly
what drives evolution and I'm not prepared to make a call on that except to
note this:

Given that 99.5% of all species are extinct, if natural selection acts on
the species then evolution is a real bummer. If evolution acted to preserve
a species this would be oppositional to variation arising as variation will
eventually lead to speciation.

We are the behavioural rules, are very selves are the behavioural rules that
evolution has created. These rules do not "act" on us, we are and manifest
these rules.

Please clarify your "Are you mad" remark. In what sense? Do you honestly
believe that we should always feel good? I don't think that's possible. I'll
run with my old friends the Mayahana Buddhists on that one. Anger has
changed so much in the world, don't underestimate the utility of "negative
emotions".  I used the terms good and bad in the context of the message I
responded too, where the clear implication was that negative emotions are
bad (the power of bloody words!).

> I think that may be it is a whole game between the seek of pleasure and
> the avoidance of pain.

Yes possibly, but this tells us nothing.

Remove 4x

> Felipe
> Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/
> Before you buy.

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