The Most Hazardous Species: Us?
Richard Wrangham: I think that I'm still very bothered by the fact that humans have not taken on board the degree to which we are a dangerous species. There's a very wide sense that -- the default conditions for humans is if no bad person comes along we'll all live in peace together. I'm kept up at night by the notion that that's a dangerous concept because it underestimates the propensity for things going wrong. And I'm hoping that, just as more and more people understand evolutionary theory and where we come from and be real about us in that way, more and more people will appreciate that we do have to take into account our aggressive propensities because when you do that, then you can design a safe world. Then you can recognize when danger is coming. So, just as people do recognize that men are dangerous as potential rapists and we take back the night and we don't allow people to have dark areas in cities where it's simply foolhardy for young women to walk alone. So life is safer if we recognize the dangers and anticipate them. And that way we've got a great future.
Question: How do we recognize that?
Richard Wrangham: Well in the same way that we are doing now. I mean, look what happened in Kenya in 2008. There was a contested election and something like 2,000 people died. And that could have turned into a Rwandan genocide. But actually there was huge intervention, and it was resented by the President of Kenya, but people slowly came in with a single voice and said, look, we recognize a tremendous danger here, we really care. They worked for an intense couple of months in particular, and what happens is, you end up with the President and the Prime Minster from the rival parties and they're working together. It doesn't mean that peace will always happen there, there may be further conflicts. But people are sensitive now to the dangers. And that's what I think is really important.
Humans have not acknowledged the degree to which we are a dangerous species. Life is safer if we recognize the dangers and anticipate them.
Rediscovering the principles of self-actualisation might be just the tonic that the modern world is crying out for.
Abraham Maslow was the 20th-century American psychologist best-known for explaining motivation through his hierarchy of needs, which he represented in a pyramid. At the base, our physiological needs include food, water, warmth and rest.
"I was so moved when I saw the cells stir," said 90-year-old study co-author Akira Iritani. "I'd been hoping for this for 20 years."
- The team managed to stimulate nucleus-like structures to perform some biological processes, but not cell division.
- Unless better technology and DNA samples emerge in the future, it's unlikely that scientists will be able to clone a woolly mammoth.
- Still, studying the DNA of woolly mammoths provides valuable insights into the genetic adaptations that allowed them to survive in unique environments.
Does believing in true love make people act like jerks?
- Ghosting, or cutting off all contact suddenly with a romantic partner, is not nice.
- Growth-oriented people (who think relationships are made, not born) do not appreciate it.
- Destiny-oriented people (who believe in soulmates) are more likely to be okay with ghosting.
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