Showing posts with label ring speciation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ring speciation. Show all posts

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Self Realization and Religion

Your Zodiac sign - Beliefnet

The essence of religion is the belief that life cannot be managed by oneself. Indoctrination begins at birth and continues to puberty and beyond if possible. At puberty a few find this indoctrination onerous and search out other paradigms.

For women especially the indoctrination that life consists of the missionary position under the husband is easily rejected, but the self management of ones life is harder, as there are fewer opportunities for most women. The insignificant self worth for women taught by most religions makes pleasing men via beauty contests, provocative dress, cosmetics, etc. one outlet. Astrology provides a gender neutral way to get guidance in life management while breaking free from that little vuvuzela in the fancy dress in the over decorated balcony. I see astrology as training wheels for self-management of ones life as the choices still need to be made from the options provided. I also find the predominance of women in Wicca is another way to break the stranglehold of misogynistic religion for women without giving up the direction from other.

In atheistic communities this is less of a problem as young women as well as young men are expected to learn self-realization early in life through participation in sports, the arts, and science fairs. Sometimes the young men long for religion as the young women excel in all areas as they mature earlier than the young men.

In atheistic communities the choice for women is not the 'Turning Point' of career vs marriage, but which career to choose among several options. I know of several young women who are combining science at Eg. Harvard with music at N E Conservatory. or Music and Physics at Cal or U of Miich. (My world is music pardon the bias.) Somehow the missionary position isn't anywhere in the immediate future.

This is not to say that reproduction is out of the picture, in fact a dual career in the arts and academia/business research is seen as an ideal basis for family support. For both men and women I might add. Many atheist men view parenting as a critical part of building a legacy that they would be willing to die for. No need for pie in the sky, the echo of the meaning and purpose that has been taught from ones children and their friends and seeing them take it and grow with it makes the end of life a welcome coda. I need no heaven after I die. It is right here. Now.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Teach Your Children Well

Harris Determinism - Beliefnet

Far better than giving a child a cheeseburger or teaching them a skill is to teach the child rational and critical thinking. That way hesh will choose to pass on the cheeseburger, and choose skills that are rewarding and interesting. Therein, not determinism or God, lies success.

It seems that teaching skills even quite advanced skills is compatible with religious beliefs. It is no longer surprising that scientists, engineers, and even hack lawyers, can be believers. If they can avoid the critical thinking courses at the University or get past them by using the skill of regurgitating the thinking of the professor (or buying a creative paper on the net)it seems they can do quite well for the Church.

This does change the ring speciation outlook a bit, but skill education only for the men seems like an evolutionary dead end to me. I will still bet on critical thinking education especially for K-12 women to tip the balance, even though believers will out breed the rationalists by a large margin. I don't think they will retain control over their women.

Biology of Belief

Philosopher of Religion...Calls it Quits - Beliefnet

Andrew Newberg, M.D., et al., Why God Won't Go Away: Brain Science and the Biology of Belief. (2001, Ballantine)

Some, but not all human brains are wired to include god beliefs, leaving them susceptible to the con artists pushing religion. This wiring may even be beneficial to those unable to manage their lives without God or at least that little vuvuzela in the fancy dress in the over decorated balcony telling them what to do. The afterlife belief is simply an empty promise of a reward for a wasted life.

I suspect that this wiring was important in evolutionary history when a huge portion of the population had essentially no control over the course of their lives and had no ability to affect their society or even their family in any meaningful way. They learned the trade of their father if male, were bred at puberty if female, and lived out their lives basically as their parents did from one day to the next doing what they had to to to please the lord of the community, and had the Sabbath off to please the Lord of that little vuvuzela in the fancy dress in the over decorated balcony. The Sabbath was usually heavy in the psychological reward department: Inspirational stories, music, drumming, social networking, etc. and of course elaborate rituals promising a rewarding afterlife if they do what they are told to do the rest of the week.

A major paradigm shift occurred in Europe when the communities became big enough that the lord, now King, began to encourage and support secular education, art, and music for some in the court, especially the children of the high status courtiers. The connection between music and art and rational rather than belief based thinking is well established. Thus high status people began to gain control over their own lives and the god belief wiring atrophied. This self-actualization spread as education became more general and religion became relatively less important in the lives of the well educated.

The biology of belief was once critical to survival. It is now possibly an evolutionary dead end. And ring speciation of believers and rational thinkers with continue apace. I doubt that God belief will survive as they seem to be out-breeding their resource base. Time will tell.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Academic Achievement and Parenting

Why does religion ... moral? - Beliefnet

What got me thinking about ring speciation was a comment by several women medical students that the 3rd year of Medical School was the baby year. There was even pressure on a philosophical non-breeder I know of to get pregnant. Other female academic achievers generally plan on the first baby in their second to last year of their planned scholastic career. While advanced academics and atheism tend to go together, there are many men and women active in the campus churches, who fit into the late parenting end of the Ring.

The ring is driven by the acceptance of women as productive contributors to the intellectual and economic segments of the society. They are no longer viewed as breeding stock and property of men. One of the reasons I identify the other end of the ring as religious, is that the Abrahamic traditions, tend to strongly reinforce the status of women in the society as the property of and subject to the men, their fathers prior to puberty and their husbands, defined as the man who took her virginity. Many of the Abrahamic traditions have involved sexual rules designed to insure the position of women as breeding stock.

At the late breeding end of the ring, generally the women are the choosers. Sexual rituals are designed around building the parenting pair bond enabled by female control of contraception. Loss of virginity is largely incidental and no longer the equivalent of betrothal. Sexuality is just part of the dance of long term mate selection, although it seems that casual sex among the late breeding end of the ring is uncommon, as sex is viewed as a relationship building activity by both the men and the women. Biology still rules, but sexual partners are chosen by those aspiring to advanced education with longer term goals in mind than simply satisfying biological drives although those drives still encourage early mate selection although the breeding will be deferred by consent of both parties.

The negotiation involved in removing the contraceptive is complex, involving child care issues, career support, and generally recognition of the fact that a male's career is generally more flexible than that of the female. I speak largely from experience here, three times I had to play the male MBA card to change careers to accommodate the inflexible career path of my co-parent. I am also seeing more males deferring career building for parenting either in the sense of limiting hours and travel at the cost of career advancement to outright deferral of employment for the child care role. Please note that dissertation completion, is quite compatible with primary parenting and is not viewed by the larger advanced educated society as a career interruption for either gender.

As you look at the median age of first child for couples with advanced degrees, it is mid to late 20's for the women and much the same for the men. Compare this with the believers, defined in this context as people who adhere to the dogma of their church or mosque with little questioning who generally are parents in their late teens at the latest. Particularly the females have no interest in advanced education unless they didn't get their Mrs. in high school. The men may well go on to advanced education, with mom tagging along but as mom will be using the church as support, the man will be tied there as well. Even well into graduation and career.

The ends of the ring are breeding couples only. Evolution doesn't "care" about non breeders. Some will op out of the breeding cycle although not of sexuality depending on contraception to prevent undesired progeny. Certainly there is a lot of room in the middle of the ring for many variations on the theme. A common mix of education for the and traditional role for women involves usually a major age difference with the male breeding at the completion of the educational phase and selecting younger women from the church as parent. The man will continue in the traditional role of provider for the family and the woman and church will do the parenting and socialization.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Ring Speciation

The "Dawkins" Petition - Beliefnet

Since Homo Sapiens moved out of the caves they realized that educating and socializing children was the responsibility of the parent, usually the mother. Whatever help she could avail herself of was an evolutionary necessity. Generally this meant learning the customs, mores, and, yes, the religion of the tribe. Those tribes that did not do this well were eliminated from the gene pool.

This is called evolution. It is not pretty, kind, or painless. It is continuing today. Parents will teach their children the customs, mores, and religion of their tribe, and if these teachings are incompatible with an educated, cosmopolitan larger society, there is nothing that educated, cosmopolitan society can do, except perhaps 'Cry, my beloved country' most of you are not going to make it. There are only so many jobs in the Creation Museums, even if a few Governors are convinced that such museums are worthy 'stimulus projects'

There is a clear ring speciation going on in the Human Species today. It is based on intelligent rational thinking as found in the major academic universities. The other end of the ring is the faith based traditional thinking as found in religious academies and the Texas School Board. The mating rituals are different enough that speciation, that is lack of interbreeding will become more and more common until the two ends of the ring will be incompatible. As in all ring speciation the intermediates will breed in both directions, and there will be movement within the ring.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Cosmopolitan Communities.

The Basis of Human Morality - Beliefnet

We live and move and have our being not only as individuals but in community. [edited for readability]

J'C: "Historically our community has been imposed on us typically by religions, and more recently by other social units like universities, companies, and civic clubs. Perhaps a major change in "Community" is that the world is so large and interconnected that the "Community" is no longer defined by institutions, but by ad-hoc associations of like minded people, who may for instance be members of a church, a company, on the board of an arts organization, participate in alumni activities from their University and of course on the internet. These associations may be international in scope, but the important thing is the cosmopolitan nature of the association. People are not defined by where they live, go to church, work, recreate, but what they contribute to the association. I see this as a fundamental change in human social organization, and a hopeful one. It is hard to work up a good hate if there is no group to hate."

This may in fact be the direction of evolution for humans. Couples are breeding later in life after establishing themselves in the various groups that define their "community." Modern medicine has pushed back the female biological clock to the point that age is no longer a consideration for contributing to the gene pool. It is still common for couples to form in a university, but normally the other associations are established and the larger "community" they will be a part of is clear. But the pressure for the MRS degree in the university is off, and men and women feel confident that once established in their "community" the appropriate mate will come along to do their part for replacement fecundity. Note, the child(ren)are never accidents, and are assured of a supportive home to grow from.

I see a ring speciation going on here. The traditional communities will continue the present breeding pattern of a few kids in late teens or early 20s divorce at 25 and mom struggles to give the kids a good life. Enough dads will stick around to keep the community together, but the centrifugal force of the single mom driving her kids to succeed any way they can, sports or academics usually, seems to me to be fatal to the traditional community. Certainly they will never be comfortable with the cosmopolitan communities, and interbreeding will be rare.