Evolution and Mankind's Destiny

Discussion of current events
User avatar
Sertorio
Posts: 904
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2016 3:12 am

Evolution and Mankind's Destiny

Post by Sertorio » Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:22 am

Evolution and Mankind’s destiny

It seems increasingly likely that human life may soon be extended to well over 100 years and maybe even 200 years. Genetic engineering and the growth of replacement organs from staminal cells would be the major instruments towards that goal. An idea which seems to excite many people around the world, who start considering eternal life as a real possibility.

The point is: is this a good idea? What can be the consequences?...

Most people do not think about this, but human evolution is far from complete. We keep evolving, maybe not so much morphologically, but certainly as far as our brain is concerned. But this evolution is very slow, which means that we do not notice any changes, and we have no clue about the direction of such evolution.

Contrarily to the general belief, evolution does not come about mainly through spontaneous mutations, as Darwin seemed to think. The main instrument of evolution is lateral transfer of genes, in other words, the acquisition by humans of genes from other species, by the action of virus. A virus may invade an organism and acquire some genetic material from the host, which may then be passed on to an human being invaded by that virus. Such transfers are random and most of them may lead to nothing but, every once in a while, the new genes develop new features in the host organism which, if beneficial, will persist and be transmitted to the offspring. Much of mamals physical and brain evolution came about in this way, and thus in human ancestors as well.

As this process is ongoing, we may expect further evolutionary changes in our species, but we have no idea in what direction. Will humans in 100,000 years be physically different, being able, for instance, of growing new organs or limbs following decay or an accident? Will our vision change? Or our reproductive mechanisms? Or will the evolution affect our minds, giving us new capacities or new forms of self and collective awareness?

In any case evolution can only occur if we are mortal and if our individual lives are not greatly extended. An immortal human species would not evolve, and if our lives are extended to several hundred years, it will slow so much that we may become extinct before we evolve.

One may think that evolution could be achieved through genetic engineering, but such an evolution would be limited to those aspects which we feel might be interesting. And thus it would be very limited. Natural evolution, because of the random aspect of gene transfer, is unpredictable and may lead us to heights we could never immagine. If we stiffle natural evolution and keep only artificial evolution, the end result may be disappointing and fall far short of what could otherwise be possible.

We should therefore give up any ideas of a major extension of our lifetime, keeping it around 100 years, although making every effort possible to keep us active and mentally healthy for as long as we live.

Are we prepared to keep our lives relatively short for the sake of evolution and of the destiny of our species?...

User avatar
lzzrdgrrl
Posts: 250
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2016 8:18 pm

Re: Evolution and Mankind's Destiny

Post by lzzrdgrrl » Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:05 am

At present the emotional and psychological states of human beings is quite uneven and that would suggest we have a lot more evolution to go through, but that doesn't suggest that it's something we will do. If the environment doesn't change, the species phenotype remains stable, and by environment I mean the psychological environment. A static, uniform and everywhere constant environment which our social, political and cultural efforts seem quite poised to try and bring forward. Nietzsche posited a homo ultima et finalis as our destiny and my pessimism suggests nothing may happen otherwise.......
I have a certain notoriety among the lesser gods........

User avatar
Sertorio
Posts: 904
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2016 3:12 am

Re: Evolution and Mankind's Destiny

Post by Sertorio » Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:26 am

lzzrdgrrl wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:05 am
If the environment doesn't change...
That wouldn't preclude evolution by lateral gene transfer by virus...

User avatar
SteveFoerster
Posts: 1019
Joined: Thu Dec 15, 2016 7:17 pm
Location: Northern Virginia, USA and Dominica, West Indies
Contact:

Re: Evolution and Mankind's Destiny

Post by SteveFoerster » Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:41 pm

Any position against human longevity is quite literally against life itself and in favour of death. To all such, I say "you first".
Writer, technologist, educator, gadfly.
President of New World University: http://newworld.ac

User avatar
cassowary
Posts: 1351
Joined: Thu Dec 15, 2016 11:30 pm

Re: Evolution and Mankind's Destiny

Post by cassowary » Sun Nov 19, 2017 7:30 pm

Sertorio wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:22 am
Contrarily to the general belief, evolution does not come about mainly through spontaneous mutations, as Darwin seemed to think. The main instrument of evolution is lateral transfer of genes, in other words, the acquisition by humans of genes from other species, by the action of virus.
This is something new to me. Where did you get this?

User avatar
lzzrdgrrl
Posts: 250
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2016 8:18 pm

Re: Evolution and Mankind's Destiny

Post by lzzrdgrrl » Sun Nov 19, 2017 9:53 pm

Sertorio wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:26 am
lzzrdgrrl wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:05 am
If the environment doesn't change...
That wouldn't preclude evolution by lateral gene transfer by virus...
Suggesting that we won't achieve immortality by life extension, but by sheer indifference to life. Immortal and dead at the same time, the last man strives for nothing and wants only comfort. The last man who has given up using language to share ideas and reach consensus but only to signify intent and to proclaim self identity. We may change, but we'd be too indifferent to notice anyway........
I have a certain notoriety among the lesser gods........

User avatar
Sertorio
Posts: 904
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2016 3:12 am

Re: Evolution and Mankind's Destiny

Post by Sertorio » Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:08 am

cassowary wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 7:30 pm
Sertorio wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:22 am
Contrarily to the general belief, evolution does not come about mainly through spontaneous mutations, as Darwin seemed to think. The main instrument of evolution is lateral transfer of genes, in other words, the acquisition by humans of genes from other species, by the action of virus.
This is something new to me. Where did you get this?
This may be of assistance to you:

http://www.panspermia.org/virus.htm

User avatar
Sertorio
Posts: 904
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2016 3:12 am

Re: Evolution and Mankind's Destiny

Post by Sertorio » Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:11 am

SteveFoerster wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:41 pm
Any position against human longevity is quite literally against life itself and in favour of death. To all such, I say "you first".
eternal life = no evolution = decadence = death

very long life = almost no evolution = decadence = death

User avatar
SteveFoerster
Posts: 1019
Joined: Thu Dec 15, 2016 7:17 pm
Location: Northern Virginia, USA and Dominica, West Indies
Contact:

Re: Evolution and Mankind's Destiny

Post by SteveFoerster » Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:31 pm

Sertorio wrote:
Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:11 am
SteveFoerster wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:41 pm
Any position against human longevity is quite literally against life itself and in favour of death. To all such, I say "you first".
eternal life = no evolution = decadence = death

very long life = almost no evolution = decadence = death
this nonsense = bollocks = anti-life = you first
Writer, technologist, educator, gadfly.
President of New World University: http://newworld.ac

neverfail
Posts: 1423
Joined: Sun Dec 18, 2016 3:47 am

Re: what is the use?

Post by neverfail » Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:19 pm

This discussion is pointless!

Even if the case for the further evolution of our human species as promoted by Sertorio is valid, evolution normally takes place so slowly that none of us will be around to see it happen.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: cassowary and 4 guests