Archive for the ‘Epigenetics’ Category

Humans: Naturally Born Scientists

June 5, 2015

Philosophers, through the ages, have tried to distinguish man from beast. The soul was suggested as a possible distinction (that was an old Middle Age theory, later adopted by Descartes). Tool usage was proposed (Bergson). And then language was offered as characteristic of humans. But animals were found to have theories of mind, tools, and language. How is man going to feel proud and different?

What about science? Does the inbred ability to produce it characterize us? I think so.

What Is Science? It Is Not To Be Confused With Scientific Theories:

Science is the body of certain facts. Science is the body of facts which have been proven experimentally to be true.

Curiously, many people do not get this simple statement. Is it because primary school is not taught adequately?

We Have Been Scientists, All Along, Ever More

We Have Been Scientists, All Along, Ever More

Science is the body of certain facts. Science is the body of facts which have been proven experimentally to be true. How hard is it to understand this?

Newtonian Mechanics for example is science because, within its domain of application, all its predictions are, and have been proven to be, indeed, what is observed.

Same thing for classical thermodynamics: facts are predicted, and observed to be true, time and time again. Same thing for continental drift: it predicts that continents are moving, and they are observed to move, indeed. At the exact rate predicted.

Biological evolution, too, is science. It says species have evolved. This is indeed what is observed. Thus, evolution is science. It’s not just a theory. Biological science says even more: that species are still evolving, as observed.

And so on:

Science is the body of facts which have been proven time and time again, to be indeed, occurring.

Then there are so-called “scientific” theories.

Scientific Theories Are Not Science, But, First, Theories:

Theory means: a point of view. Theories are not just facts anymore, but a way to organize them according to a perspective. That calls onto pieces of logic which are not proven. A “scientific” theory can be made of a mumbo-jumbo of facts, and completely unproven, even outrageous hypotheses.

Evolution is science. But scientific theories of how this evolution exactly happens are debatable, and debated. They are not sure. They are just theories. (Is evolution just from “natural selection”, haphazardly, or is there more, such that intelligent steering by Quantum epigenetics, as I believe?)

Most Quantum mechanics is science: it’s a set of rules, a logos, which has been checked, time and time again. However, as soon as one steps a bit away from it, it becomes uncertain (for example the Many Interacting World, MIW, a theory is handy, but it assumes that particles are points; that latter point is not a proven, certain fact).

String Theory, Supersymmetry, Multiverse, for example, are theories which include some “scientific” or “mathematical” facts. But they cannot even be checked, let alone capable of making predictions which are observed.

So those “scientific theories” are not “science”. They make a body of knowledge of some sort, like a game. But they are not allowing to make predictions observed in nature.

***

Subtleties:

There are so-called “demarcation problems“, always. It happens within science: Newtonian Mechanics makes superbly exact predictions about where space probes go as engineers use planets as slings to launch them further. However, if one wants to find out about GPS drift, one has to use the more general version of gravitation of Einstein (the latter reduces exactly to Newtonian Mechanics inside the solar system; so the theory changes from Newton, for rockets, to General Relativity (GR), for GPS).

A more subtle demarcation is found, within the body of any given science. For example, part of Einstein theory of gravitation is science, as it predicts exactly what is exactly observed (say with the Geo Positioning System). However, the same set of ideas when applied to, say, Black Holes, comes short: it runs out of enough ideas to make exact predictions, runs out of experiments to be checked, and observed facts.

Thus the theory of gravitation, GR, is science (the closest one stays to Newton), and also a hoped-for scientific theory (but not as disconnected from reality as String Theory, Susy, Multiverse, etc.). However, GR, as a general scientific theory, has disappointed: the unified theory which Einstein tried to develop did not work. (Instead it morphed into something else the general fiber space theory with Ehresman connections, known as Gauge Theory, also know as Quantum Field Theory, etc.)

Thus:

Science is what we know for sure:

How do we know that a logic is true, for sure? By conducting experiments.

By that token, archery was a science (launched just right, an arrow goes where it’s supposed to). Archery later blossomed into gunnery, ballistics, Newtonian Mechanics. Nowadays we would not consider archery as a science, but it’s among the simplest cases of dynamics.

For millions of years, our ancestors have used plants to help with their health. (Ethology has shown many animals do this, not just upper primates.) At this point, around 60% of our medical drugs come from plants.

The European iceman was found carrying general purpose antibiotics. Not by accident. He died more than 5,000 years ago.

And so on. Science is what is sure. We have been sure for a long, a very long time. If we were not so sure, we could not do much.

An artisan making a work perfectly is a scientist, in the particular domain in which this artisan excels. A prehistoric man striking a stone, just so that the force would split a crystal perfectly along pre-determined planes, was a scientist. A rock scientist. He, or she, was engaging in an application of a science we now know as crystallography. (And also in the theory of the mechanical forces, vector calculus.)

Humanity has blossomed, because humanity has learned how to establish, for sure, certain truths which required artificially devised experiments, and the proclivity to push the last frontier of truth, ever more, by being ever more subtle.

We evolved to become an intentionally scientific, that is, prone to experiment, species.

SCIENCE IS US.

And philosophy and its philosophical method, in all that? It’s the category of all the wild guesses, absolutely indispensable to suggest the next experiments, to feed tomorrow’s truths.

***

Science Is Starting To Address Ethics, And Theory Of Mind:

Long the rage smoldered between the so called “humanities” and science. How obsolete. Clearly science is making inroads in the humanities, and clearly the humanities can ask pointed questions to physics, biology, even engineering. Let’s consider the first point, how science is informing humanities.

There is a science called ethology. It comes from “ethos” which means character. Ethology is the logic of character. Ethos also gave the notion of ethics.

Ethology originally was the study of character of animals, from their objective behavior. A number of methods pertaining to the field were developed, Nobel Prizes in biology and medicine were awarded to ethologists.

Then, in the following decades, it dawned on ethologists that the methods of ethology could be extended to the study of the human character.

This is why I am surprised when I hear that one needs a metaphysics to have an ethics. Instead, ethics is something that is determined by the bottom up (instead of top down).

First, through trial, error, and natural selection, human ethology evolved in the last 500 million years. Nature played scientist to evolve us.

Second, human beings observe, and make theories, even social and ethical theories, and then they apply what is basically the scientific method to them.

The scientific method consists in establishing with reasonable certainty facts. As it becomes ever more subtle, it can address ever more sophisticated domains, which used to be exclusively philosophical.

An example? The Theory of Mind. That is a subject long exclusively philosophical. However, scientific research published in recent years showed that children exposed to a second language have, in the average, a better theory of mind. Here is a fresh example, published in 2015:

http://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21652258-children-exposed-several-languages-are-better-seeing-through-others-eyes-do

Here is an abstract of the research:

HUMAN beings are not born with the knowledge that others possess minds with different contents. Children develop such a “theory of mind” gradually, and even adults have it only imperfectly. But a study by Samantha Fan and Zoe Liberman at the University of Chicago, published in Psychological Science, finds that bilingual children, and also those simply exposed to another language on a regular basis, have an edge at the business of getting inside others’ minds… Some objects were blocked from the experimenter’s sight, a fact the children could clearly see. With a large, a medium and a small car visible to the child, but the small car hidden from the adult, the adult would ask “I see a small car” and ask the child to move it. Both bilingual and those in the exposure group moved the medium-sized car (the smallest the experimenter could see) about 75% of the time, against 50% for the monolinguals. The successful children were less likely even to glance at the car the experimenter could not see.

Why is this happening? Multilingual children observe that different languages provide with different perspectives, thus different theories (theory means literally, to “see” (horan) a “view” (thea)). So multilingual children are more apt to consider which view others see, when considering others.

Multilingual children have a theory of theories of behavior, and we can prove it scientifically. Epistemics” is now a science. And it informs morality.

We are the scientific species. No science, no man. Now, more than ever. And at last smart enough to understand what it means. It means: “Plus Oultre!”, as emperor Charles Quint put it, five centuries ago. Wherever we arrived, in place, time, or understanding, we have to go beyond. It’s not just what ecology requires, it’s what we are.

Patrice Ayme’

Against Emotional Shrinkage

December 29, 2014

Is Rejecting The Human Condition Wise? Or Simply Inhuman?

In Against Invulnerability, philosophy professor Todd May has walked some of my way, and I will help him with some of the rest (empathy in action!). Here is Todd, in the New York Times, for “The Stone”, a succession of rather stony essays in philosophy:

“Like many of us, I am often troubled. I am distressed by my failure to be more than I am: a better philosopher, a better family member, a better person. And I know that if I could take a little more distance on the daily goings-on in my world that trouble me, I would probably be better in many if not all of these ways. This knowledge leads me to think of those philosophies that counsel rising above the things that disturb me so that I may arrive at a tranquil state of mind. Philosophies like Buddhism, Stoicism, Taoism, and possibly Epicureanism (the ancient philosophy, not its modern association with pleasures of the flesh) offer different ways of achieving such a tranquil state, and so they are tempting. I believe, however, that for most of us they are a false if beguiling path.”

Chameleons Are Not Stoic, They Anticipate The World

Chameleons Are Not Stoic, They Anticipate The World

[Chameleons are found in the Namibian desert, not just tropical rain forest; there they have to cover huge distances in search of prey… while avoiding to become dinner, so they change colors just as fast as they run across. The chameleonic way of life is not Buddhist, just begging inertly for crumbs from the rich, dressed in bright orange.]

Let me applaud Todd May. There was some predictable screaming on the Internet from Stoics and Buddhists, claiming for both that they do not shun emotions, but bears them.

However, that’s somewhat besides the point. Indeed, not enough is, in crucial situations, the equivalent of not at all: if a plane tries to fly, and it does not have enough speed, it crashes.

Stoicism and Buddhism, and the sort of Fatalism connected to Christianism (Dieu le veut!) or Islam (Inch Allah) have crashed civilization repeatedly (at some point, before a crash, Buddhism controlled most of India).

Here is more of what the heroic (by academic standards) Todd says:

“Buddhism, at least in its official doctrine, argues that if we abandon our desires by coming to understand the true nature of the cosmos and follow the Noble Eightfold Path, the end of suffering will follow. Stoicism similarly (but distinctly) counsels that we rid ourselves of emotion, and similarly (but again distinctly) offers a path of recognition of our place in the universe to help us get there. I do not wish to claim that either or both of these or related doctrines are mistaken. Instead, I want to say that most of us, when we really reflect upon our lives, would not want what is officially on offer, but instead something else.”

But the author is right on target on his main point, the excellent notion of “invulnerability“:

“In their official guise, these doctrines are examples of what I am going to label “invulnerabilism.” They say that we can, and we should, make ourselves immune to the world’s vicissitudes. What is central to invulnerabilist views is the belief that we can extricate ourselves from the world’s contingencies so that they do not affect us. We are capable of making ourselves immune to the fortunes of our bodies, our thoughts, and our environment, and we will live better or happier or more pure lives if we do so. Whether the task involves the abolition of desire, the elimination of emotion or the recognition of the ultimate oneness of all things, the guiding idea is that we can and ought to make ourselves invulnerable to the world’s vagaries.”

Todd makes implicitly the point that, fundamentally, the invulnerabilists deny the human condition:

“For invulnerabilist views, what matters is only the present. After all, as they argue, the present is all there is, and therefore the only thing we can have an effect upon. Moreover, we can only be assured of having an effect upon ourselves in the present. Our effects upon the world are always uncertain. The task of invulnerabilism, then, is for us to inhabit the present fully and without reserve, letting go of the grip of our past and our desires for the future. Only if we do this can we render ourselves immune to the predations of our psychological tendencies, tendencies tied up with hope, regret, expectation and mourning.

Invulnerabilism recommends that we secrete a distance between ourselves and the world so that ultimately it cannot touch us.”

This is all very true. Its major defect is that it denies what the brain is made for. The brain is made for predicting the future. Even a chameleon’s brain anticipates the future, as it focuses, and prepares its tongue. Stoics, Buddhism and the like, want to have no tongue, and no focus on anticipation. They want to amputate us, please help! Are they why there is so much plutocracy, and nobody is doing anything about it?

As I have argued for years, that, by reducing emotions, one reduces the human condition, and, thus, the very ability to reduce pain. Invulnerabilists are self-defeating. Todd touches upon that:

“Most of us want to feel caught up in the world. We want to feel gripped by what we do and those we care about, involved with them, taken up by them. The price of this involvement is our vulnerability. We must stand prepared to feel the loss of what we care about, because that is part of what it means to care. Caring requires desiring for the sake of others, which in an uncertain world entails that that desiring can be frustrated.”

Stoicism, as defined by Epictetus and Marcus Aurelius is centered on trying to achieve emotional detachment from what one cannot change.

Of course the problem is that one finds out what one cannot change from thinking, and thinking arises from emoting. So, if you don’t emote right, or not enough, you won’t think right.

By insisting that acceptance and tranquility are the most important, somehow most noble moods, invulnerability theories shrink the imagination, and mental reach.

Thus making acceptance and tranquility into a religion dwarves the human spirit into a shadow of its former self..

Are we going to accept infamy, too, because we cannot change it?

Marcus Aurelius is exhibit number one. Somehow he decided that he could not change the old way to select an emperor, and it had to be simply the son of himself. Thus he named his own son Commodus on a whole succession of honors by the age of 12, then made that boy a Consul, and finally co-emperor by the age of sixteen (16).

The son was Commodus, one of the most atrocious Roman emperors, and certainly the worst one (he gave up huge chunks of the empire, next to its core).

Marcus Aurelius, and the four emperors before him had been selected on merit. But merit and performance, selecting the best, were apparently antagonistic to Marcus Aurelius’ acceptance and tranquility.

Marcus Aurelius ought to have cracked down on plutocrats who did not pay enough taxes to sustain the army, then engaged in desperate defense. There, again, Marcus opted for acceptance (of infamy) and tranquility.

Stoicism is comfort, but duty is not always comfortable.

Moods and emotions are at the root of thinking. Cancelling the former would cancel the later, and turn us into beasts. That would be counterproductive to the oftentimes loudly advocated aim, reducing human suffering (people behaving like beasts do not live optimal lives in the complicated civilization we have).

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2014/12/26/moods-rule-thoughts/

Trying to reduce pain through invulnerability theories is a bit hypocritical, because one could swallow a great quantity of sleeping pills, or take other drastic measures, to achieve a pain-free coma… Or death, surely an end to suffering in this allegedly terrible world.

So why are these theories arise so popular? Two viewpoints, as usual: those of the masters, and those of the slaves.

A meta question ponders who pushed, and pushes these theories on the masses? The mechanism is obvious: it is easier to domesticate the emotion-deprived, and thus thought-deprived ones, than fully intelligent human beings.

Thus invulnerability theories and religions are actually optimal for great masters who want to have many emotion-less, inhuman little slaves, with reduced intelligence.

That’s why the masters love Buddhism and company. But then why do the small people love this mood which serves to oppress them too?

Acceptance and tranquility should not be the end-all, be-all. Except, of course, for people with frayed nerves living in denial. Or then people who wants to live gloriously.

Anger is crucial to crush infamy. Absolutely excluding anger is absolutely accepting infamy as a matter of principle. Instead one should follow Voltaire’s advice: “Il faut ecraser l’infame!”. One ought to crush infamy.

Some specialists of Asian sociology believe that a lot of the problems in Asia (for example the holocaust in Cambodia) originated with too much tranquility and acceptance for the intolerable.

Obsessively focusing on acceptance and tranquility is self-serving, as it persuades the beholders, and those who look at them, that they are good, elevated people. And yes, it gets hot and passionate, where civilization is progressing. Yes, as with a kitchen, it gets hot there. But those who stay out ought not to get the respect they crave for.

Get angry, expand thinking, crush infamy!

Patrice Ayme’

The (Ongoing) Evolution of Evolutionary Theory

November 14, 2014

The last two essays on Biological Evolution, the fruits of decades of meditation, were proximally suggested by an essay from Massimo Pigliucci, a philosopher and biologist (PhD genetics) initially from Italy and now, armed with a PhD in Philosophy (PhDPh?) from the USA, a professor at CUNY.

I thought Massimo unfortunately engaged in the usual Anglosphere trick of attributing the scientific establishment of Biological Evolution to Darwin, not Lamarck. This is fraught with numerous pitfalls, and adverse consequences, not the least of which being that Evolution deniers are thick on the ground in the USA.

Indeed reducing the Evolution debate to Darwin and a handful of finches, is all too reductive. Reductive to the point of eschewing most of the debate on evolution, as I tried to explain in the preceding two essays.

Lamarck established the Foundations of Evolution, and demonstrated, first of all, that it happened. And that it happened over eons.

Darwin and other made more explicit Evolution through natural selection (which is implicit in Lamarck, who, obviously considered it self-evident from what he described).

“Do we not therefore perceive that by the action of the laws of organization . . . nature has in favorable times, places, and climates multiplied her first germs of animality, given place to developments of their organizations, . . . and increased and diversified their organs? Then. . . aided by much time and by a slow but constant diversity of circumstances, she has gradually brought about in this respect the state of things which we now observe. How grand is this consideration, and especially how remote is it from all that is generally thought on this subject!”
[Text of a lecture given by Lamarck at the Musée National d’Histoire Naturelle, Paris, May 1803.]

Lamarck was 57 years old when in 1801 he published his book, “The Inheritance Of Acquired Traits.”

This traits would now be called, genes, somas, prions, transposons, alleles, plasmids, and all what we have not discovered yet…

How these inherited traits are “acquired” is not clear to this day.

In recent decades, it became clear that the situation was at least as complicated as Lamarck had described it, and that the so-called “Neo-Darwinist” oversimplification of the 1960s was a grave error (ironically Darwin was on Lamarck’s side, as he tried to prove “pangenesis”! Pangenesis is pretty much a proven fact now!).

I will suggest in further essays of few more paradoxes and perspectives. Or how strict “Darwinism” contained the germ of its own de-selection as not the fittest theory.

Meanwhile, let Massimo describes it as he sees it!
Patrice Ayme’

Scientia Salon

41J0nOguz-L._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_by Massimo Pigliucci

Nature magazine recently ran a “point-counterpoint” entitled “Does evolutionary theory need a rethink?” [1] Arguing for the “Yes, urgently” side were Kevin Laland, Tobias Uller, Marc Feldman, Kim Sterelny, Gerd B. Müller, Armin Moczek, Eva Jablonka, and John Odling-Smee. Arguing for the “No, all is well” thesis were Gregory A. Wray, Hopi E. Hoekstra, Douglas J. Futuyma, Richard E. Lenski, Trudy F. C. Mackay, Dolph Schluter, and Joan E. Strassmann.

That’s a good number of top notch evolutionary biologists, colleagues that I very much respect, on both sides of the aisle. My own allegiances have been made clear in a number of papers [2] and a co-edited book [3]. I have been arguing for some time now for what I consider the moderate-yes side of the debate: yes, evolutionary theory does need (and is, in fact, getting) an update, but that update is yet another expansion along…

View original post 3,093 more words

Evolution: Lamarck’s Discovery

November 12, 2014

LAMARCK, NOT DARWIN!

Abstract: Not attributing Evolution Theory to Lamarck constitutes scientific fraud. Why this fraud is committed is explained below thoroughly (including at the meta level).

***

Science is not just about truth. Science is truth itself. Thus, the history of science is about how one establishes truth. By itself that history constitutes a science, or more exactly a mine of experimental facts (and an important one), for the metascience of veracity (truthfulness; also called the logic of knowledge, epistemology).

First overall theorem? Misattributing a discovery to another place, another time, or another country is generally not happening by accident, but by propaganda.

In 1825, Darwin’s teacher of biology informed his 16-year-old student that Lamarck had discovered “biological evolution. (This has been forgotten, thanks to nefarious propaganda.)

Lamarck Tree Of Life, 1809: “…not only will there continually be found new species, new genera, and new orders, but each species will vary in some part of its structure and form…”

Lamarck Tree Of Life, 1809: “…not only will there continually be found new species, new genera, and new orders, but each species will vary in some part of its structure and form…”

That the discovery of the theory of evolution is not attributed to Lamarck, constitute scientific fraud.

Why? It has to do first with Christian fanaticism, which did its best to lie about what Lamarck discovered. Why now? Because most scientists are too busy to read original texts, and it helps that Darwin was Anglo-American.

It was not the first time the Christian fanatics struck.

An example I am fond of is the misattribution to Copernic and Newton of ideas of Aristarchus and Buridan. The Catholic dictatorship, the obsequious servant of 2,000 years of queens and kings, is the engine of this crime. A very profitable crime, as it helped keep the rabble the exploiters were exploiting, in a state of stunned stupidity. Still is.

The misattribution to Darwin of Lamarck’s discovery, evolution, is more of the same theocracy and its associated aristocracy, anxious to keep We The People in haggard dumbness, as we will see below.

Darwinism is Lamarckism, according to Wallace. Wallace was himself a great biologist, discoverer of the Wallace Line. Wallace was on Darwin’s payroll, and was also Darwin’s coauthor. That evolution was Lamarck’s idea was actually confirmed by Darwin, who let Wallace repeat everywhere that Darwin had contributed little, relatively speaking (to Darwin’s daughter’s dismay).

So what are the facts on evolution?

Evolution by artificial selection was known for millennia, and practiced for tens of millennia (the oldest dog known is Belgian, and around 35,000 year old, it was very different from a wolf, and looked like a modern, enormous war dog, showing breeding of dogs from European wolves is at least 45,000 years old, I guess).

Breeding cattle, horses, camels, evolution by artificial selection, was a well-known art, not to say science, already in the times of Xenophon (that’s what the general-philosopher-economist did when retired).

Fossils were known in Ancient Greece. They caused confusion. To remedy this, Aristotle (PBUH), sent his students to study and report on life forms, thus founding, de facto, biology. (That the universe was not in a steady state was illustrated by the fiery landing of a giant meteorite in northern Greece; it was visited for centuries.)

By 1766, after proposing that the Solar System had been accreted from a cloud of debris, Buffon proposed that animals changed: they evolved. African and Asian elephants had evolved from Siberian mammoths, due to the changing their environment that their migrations had brought, he claimed. The details are unimportant: the evolutionary horse was out of the barn. Buffon’s broad picture of environmental pressure on evolution was also to be scientifically confirmed.

The full blown theory of evolution was proposed by Lamarck. This was a great conceptual breakthrough.

To this Massimo from Scientia Salon replied: “It was also the wrong theory, unfortunately.”

Massimo, do you mean that evolution theory is the wrong theory? Lamarck’s main body of work humbly established “the theory of evolution”, as Darwin’s personal teacher named it.

Lamarck did this, in part, by examining carefully under the microscope the evolution, over millions of years of mollusks species.

Lamarck suggested several evolution mechanisms, jointly operating (his detractors focused on one particular idea Lamarck floated in 1801).

When Copernic, copying Buridan and Aristarchus, proclaimed heliocentrism, nobody asked him for a mechanism. Still, one attributes heliocentrism to Copernic. While Copernic did not discover General Relativity, one still do not attribute heliocentrism to Einstein.

Yet those who claim Lamarck did not provide the most modern mechanism for evolution do just this.

One of Lamarck’s book, “Philosophie Zoologique” was published in 1809. The year Darwin was born. Here are some extracts:

“as new modifications will necessarily continue to operate, however slowly, not only will there continually be found new species, new genera, and new orders, but each species will vary in some part of its structure and form … individuals which from special causes are transported into very different situations from those where the others occur, and then constantly submitted to other influences – the former, I say, assume new forms, and then they constitute a new species…. [Species form] “a branching series, irregularly graduated which has no discontinuity in its parts, or which, at least, if its true that there are some because of lost species, has not always had such. It follows that the species that terminate each branch of the general series are related, at least on one side, to the other neighboring species that shade into them” [Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, 1809.]

Lamarck, employed as one of the world’s first research professors, demonstrated both the immense age of the Earth, and natural evolution, by studying fossilized mollusks.

Lamarck was so towering in biology, that he himself coined and installed the word “biology”. Here it is, in his own words, in the original French, in Lamarck’s “Origine Des Animaux Sans Vertebres” [1815]:

«Tout ce qui est généralement commun aux végétaux et aux animaux, comme toutes les facultés qui sont propres à chacun de ces êtres sans exception, doit constituer l’unique et vaste objet d’une science particulière qui n’est pas encore fondée, qui n’a même pas de nom, et à laquelle je donnerai le nom de biologie

Yes, Lamarck also named and distinguished, “invertebrates”.

Lamarck suggested that the way animals lived could directly affect their genetics. A scientifically confirmed way to get this effect is now called “epigenetics” (“above genetics”). Considering how adaptive life is revealing itself to be, it is likely that more and more “epigenetics” will be uncovered.

It is ironical that Cuvier and his ilk made fun of Lamarck claiming that psychology could leave a trace in the progeny of a creature. Yet, this has been very recently confirmed: Lamarck, a hero for our times.

Lamarck got hated for all this by the forces of Christianity. The idea that a living creature, could, by the way it lived, CREATE its own features was revolting to those who promoted the Christian god.

What Lamarck was saying, philosophically speaking was that the living creature acted as the creator.

No need for a cross, a father, a son, an omnipotent god. Napoleon hated Lamarck. The Church hated Lamarck. British universities, (Oxford, Cambridge, etc.) which, at the time, were bastion of imperial Christianity hated Lamarck.

Really great minds are measured by the disapprobation they entail.

Lamarck proposed that the long necks of giraffes evolved as generations of giraffes had to reach for ever higher leaves.

The Church and Lamarck’s enemies made fun of that (some still do, following the Church!). Lamarck was deliberately mistranslated in English to make readers believe that he suggested the effort of the giraffe somehow directly passed over in its genetics.

In truth, what Lamarck truly said was 100% compatible with 2014 evolution theory: “…s’efforcer continuellement d’y atteindre. Il est résulté de cette habitude, soutenue, depuis longtemps [by giraffes]… que ses jambes de devant sont devenues plus longues…”. By insisting upon reaching higher, girraffes created, with their own wills, a different environment.

Similarly, Lamarck suggested that there are flying squirrels, because squirrels tried to fly for generations (natural selection does not contradict this).

Lamarck did not just propose that evolutionary was driven by behavior. Following Buffon, Lamarck believed life started with spontaneous creation (this is the present view: laboratory studies and the most recent theory show that, in the early Earth’s environment, cellular life would appear spontaneously; fossils show it went fast: chemoautotrophs may have appeared 4 billion years ago).

Lamarck proposed that, insensibly, each baby was more complex than the preceding baby, so evolution would be characterized by an increase in complexity (as it indeed is).

Lamarck suggested birds descended from reptiles.

Lamarck went further than strict “Darwinists” go. He suggested that biology was an increase in complexity that could not be avoided, a sort of anti-Second Law Of Thermodynamics. Lamarck made life into a “force qui va” (to quote Victor Hugo).

This is a piece of philosophy, but one that has probably a great future: the Second Law of Thermodynamics is often quoted against life, but everything indicates that life swims up the stream of the Second Law, as the salmon swims up the river.

After 1815, reaction came over Europe. Jews got discriminated against by the Middle European dictatorship (they could not be doctors, lawyers, etc.). Lamarck, being an enemy of god, was made into an object of scorn.

The bloody dictator Napoleon launched Lamarck bashing: “[this book] … déshonore vos vieux jours… Ce volume je ne le prends que par considération pour vos cheveux blancs.”

The lies about Lamarck were deliberately crafted by a Christian fanatic, the biologist Cuvier. Cuvier, in charge of Lamarck’s eulogy misconstrued monstruously what Lamarck said about giraffes, and ill-intentioned unwitting parrots have been repeating Cuvier’s lies, ever since.

Cuvier totally believed that God had created all the species. Cuvier’s arguments are used by Christian fanatics to this day.

For example, after looking at mummies, and recent remnants, Cuvier pontificated that, as there was no evidence of recent evolution, there could be none. Lamarck retorted that Cuvier’s argument was mathematically stupid. Instead, unwittingly, Cuvier had proved, what Lamarck demonstrated first, that the Earth was very old, many millions of years old.

Lamarck being French, some feel more appropriate to attribute the discovery of evolution to the rich English gentleman Darwin, who, besides, was the heir of a financier, and not a vulgar research professor, as Lamarck was.

If Darwin’s teacher taught Darwin in 1825 that Lamarck had established “evolution”, why should we say now that “evolution” was established by the student of the student? Because, being in the Anglo-Saxon realm, we have to be Anglo nationalists? Is it all about tribalism?

As I mentioned this, EJ Winner objected that: “Patrice suggests that the bias against Lamarck is culturally determined (because he was French). This is simply and only post-modernism, in the least convincing sense. Need we really come to this?”

Well, I am not the one who came that way. Christian fanatics showed the way.

It is not because post-modernism is often wrong, that it is always wrong. Science and mathematics are, first of all, tribal phenomena. Sociologically speaking.

Lamarck was lodged at the Museum d’ Histoire Naturelle until his death at 85. Perhaps from spending too much time looking into microscopes, he was blind in his last decade.

Ideas are hard, especially when revolutionary. Parodying Lamarck’s ideas the way the Church did means that no meta-lesson was learned. Those who introduce the greatest new ideas, like evolution, deserve the greatest respect. Not showing respect for geniuses such as Lamarck is not to show respect for what makes civilization advance. Attributing Lamarck’s evolution to Darwin, just as universal attraction to Newton, belittles both Darwin and Newton, as it boils down to calling them liars. And it allows the real enemy to escape unscathed (religious and tribal fanaticism made into the dominant moods).

Attributing Lamarck’s discovery and affirmation of evolution to someone else, sixty years later, constitute scientific, and philosophical fraud. For want of a nicer way to put it.

That this is used to comfort the general intellectual aura of Anglo-American mental imperialism makes it worse. Ninety-six years ago, the First World War finished with a cease-fire. It had not solved the fundamental problem, namely that German speaking people confused dictatorship and republic. That lack of truth led them to have another go at it, 20 years later.

Ignoring truth is costly. Science, and metascience, can teach truth, and how to get to it. This is nicer in the longer term, as human beings are truth machines. Short term, it is anything but.

Truth does not have to be nice. It just is.

Patrice Ayme’

1914, IMPRINTING: Emotions Rule III

January 9, 2014

Abstract: There is a dominant tradition, especially in the USA, to not see 1914 for what it was: a war of aggression, a war crime, a crime against humanity of the greatest proportions.

Both the aggression, and its denial, are cases of emotions dominating reason. It’s historically, psychologically, and philosophically instructive, even fascinating.

What people have been exposed to first, they believe more deeply. And of course emotions are the reasons that come first. It’s sheer sedimentary neurobiology. If you think anew, what happened in one’s mind first tends to still leave the deepest emotional layers intact. Often the deepest is what is thought to profit one’s nation, tribe, or religion first.

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Bad Boys Be Bad Boys: Leaders of  the Kaiserreich Imprinting Themselves In Versailles, 1871.

Bad Boys Be Bad Boys: Leaders of the Kaiserreich Imprinting Themselves In Versailles, 1871.

[When Minds Goose Step, The Goose Soon Cooks; Polyglot Bismarck In White, Center.]

People get emotionally attached to cuddly bears, foods, habits, etc. Just because they were exposed to them, first. The same happens with ideas, or even songs. As the guitarist, singer, composer Keith Richards observed, people make out first in a car, while a song plays on the radio, and, thereafter, forever, they will feel it’s the best song in the world.

Konrad Lorentz systematically studied this phenomenon of imprinting, and got the medicine-biology Nobel for it. Ducklings follow whatever they are exposed to first. It’s not difficult to guess what happens:

New neural circuitry is created by the first exposition to whatever shows up, and thereafter, having being created stays roughly the same. Similarly for the cognitive and emotional circuitry of entire nations. Once in place, it’s nearly impossible to rewrite.

Common wisdom on World War One in the USA does not see the facts as they happened, because they contradict the deepest emotions learned first on the subject: the war was an accident (Sarajevo), the nations of Europe were all the same vicious bunch (hence the USA was right to get rich from the war), the USA tried to bring back peace (but the terrible Versailles Treaty ruined it).

What’s imprinting? Obviously, imprinting is the building of neural networks. Where there was none before, there are some after. Once there are some, new ones are difficult to build; just as it is difficult to build new structures out, or above, old ones. The ethology (Lorentz and company) enlightens the neurobiology, and the establishment of all emotions, hence values. The hierarchy of values has to do with chronological order.

Considering the way imprinting has to work neurologically, an immediate very important philosophical consequence arises: if one wants to be philosophically correct, one will have to be extremely careful about the nature of first exposition… to anything, whatsoever. As what comes first tends to be neurologically irreversible. For the youth, or for oneself, or for any excited tribal member, anywhere out there.

Socrates pontificated that the unexamined life was not worth living, I will counter-pontificate with the following, more stringent declaration:

The unexamined experience is not worth having.

Nationalism is an example of duckling behavior. The tendency of young males to go to war after getting orders to do so, maybe viewed as a tendency strongly manifested by young ducklings. Goose stepping into war is a consequence of imprinting of impressionable youth.

My acid views of Dylan and Oprah Winfrey, two entertainers, were poorly considered by some, perhaps trying to spare pets they are attached to, from blame. More modest people tend to live grand lives through the great. Thus the popularity of celebrities. And the necessity to adore & lionize them (to make them great, hence admirable). Same for nations. Nations are the ultimate celebrities.

Thus many lionize the “Germany” of 1914.

One of the honorable commenters on this site, Old Geezer Pilot, expressed succinctly the Common American Wisdom on “Germany” by claiming that: “Doesn’t anyone suspect the BRITISH for having pushed Germany into starting WWI? After all, Germany was on track to out-produce Britain in Dreadnought class ships very soon…”

No, there was absolutely no way that the Kaiser could catch up with Britain in battleships. Why? Because Britain had basically no army. All British military spending was on the Royal Navy. Germany had the world’s mightiest army, made to crush and encircle the formidable French army, the world’s second mightiest. That cost so much money, very little was left for the Kriegsmarine.

I explained, in the “Plot Against France” and in “Emotions Prime Reason II” what happened in 1914. The concept “the British” and “Germany” are NOT comparable. “Germany” did not exist really as a nation. “Germany” was just as an hysteria of poorly designed robots. “Germany” was a dictatorial plutocracy of the spastic and delirious type. Britain was a plutocracy, sure, but under a thick representative democracy’s layer. An evil dictatorship in Germany, a sort-of democracy in Britain: one cannot compare.

I excruciatingly explained in minute details many times that the American leadership goaded the Kaiser into war. The USA had interest for an attack of “Germany” on the rest of Europe. Britain, or France, had a very good reason to avoid war: time was working in their favor, as they were tapping their global empires into giant co-prosperity spheres. Moreover those democracies could not organize a conspiracy, as they societies were too open. And the fact is, they did not conspire.

But the handful of military men at the head of “Germany” could conspire, there were no democratic institutions to check them, and they did conspire, nobody could stop them. We have the documents, we have the facts. We have the attack. “Germany” attacked, “Germany” did the war crimes, within days of said attack.

The explicit analysis by Molkte and company, is that “Germany” was losing the economic, hence military, race. They were correct. That was precisely due to what they clang to, the plutocracy they led. Quite a bit the same situation as in the USSR, North Korea, and maybe soon, China.

The attachment to the Kaiserreich is one of the most striking of those which afflict the West (a variant of this is the attachment of Jews to Keynes, who was pro-Nazi…).

Loving the Reich is the other side of the coin that equates France and Britain, two democracies, to a bloody dictatorship. Thus identifying plutocracy and democracy as the same.

The Kaiserreich, also known as the Second Reich, was the ridiculous dictatorship established by Bismarck as the “German empire” in 1871 at Versailles, in a manly ceremony (see above). In this attachment, the blame for the First World War is spread equally, by platitudes about bloodthirsty Europeans.

That legend is particularly important for the USA’s tragic history, as it excuses the embargo shirking, fortune making attitude of the USA, selling to the Kaiser what he needed to pursue the war. That complicity of the USA and the Kaiser endured until the day came to charge to the rescue of victory, lest Britain and France would keep on ruling the world all by themselves.

As I have explained many times, WWI was not an accident, but a determined conspiracy. And wittingly or not, the leadership of the USA was on the side of the bad guys.

France, Belgium, Britain, and even Russia were completely innocent of the war. Britain, to start with, did not even have an army (or more exactly, the entire British army was no more than one single French army corps).

The French government was so unprepared for war, that all ministers of the government were either completely out of France, as the Prime Minister and the President were, or far away in vacation, when the Kaiserreich mobilized. An under-secretary of agriculture had to launch the French general mobilization.

Reading French or British newspapers, one week before the “German” attack, show no inkling at war.

Nobody could suspect that General von Molkte, the “Prussian chief of Staff”, head of the Kaiserreich army conspiring with four others, had declared in a war council of 1912:

General von Moltke: “I consider a war inevitable—the sooner, the better. But we should do a better job of gaining popular support for a war against Russia, in line with the Kaiser’s remarks.” His Majesty confirmed this and asked the secretary of state to use the press to work toward this end.”

One does not need to artificially create “popular support” if one’s country is attacked, so Molkte intended to attack.

That mass homicidal general was a distant relative, so I knew the inside stories from my astronomer uncle, who was his (grand)son in law; clearly Molkte caused the war, the point man of a dirty mood that had grown over two generations. Molkte, in his fascist dumbness, expected a quick and shattering victory over the French armies. He did not expect that the French would fight like crazy to preserve (their) freedom and democracy.

The French nearly destroyed the main German armies at the First Battle of the Marne, a counter-offensive on the fifth week of the “German” attack (a shattering victory would have been achieved, if the British army corps had been speedier). Afterwards, Molkte fell apart psychologically: he had started the war that was going to destroy the satanic order of things that he wanted to see rule the world with.

Wilhem II being all over the map psychologically, Molkte and his co-conspirators sent him incommunicado to a vacation home in July, with a crafty lie. They were afraid that, at the last moment, the Kaiser, grandson of Queen Victoria, would stop the planned invasion. Thus they kept him in the dark about what their true intent was (although, once he finally learned from his generals that they were going to attack the world, the Kaiser approved).

What of the assassination in Sarajevo in all this? It’s the standard fare of the (naïve) textbooks. It is much loved, as it provides a mechanism for the thesis of the “accidental” war. The heir of the Austro-Hungarian throne was assassinated, in a conspiracy from a number of students, guided by elements of the Serb “Black Hand”, who were part of the secret Serb services (acting on their own, without government authorization).

The Archduke was a grim character, not very popular, all the more as he was grimly determined to maintain peace. To boot, he was best friend with the German Kaiser Wilhem. The Archduke’s assassination was a godsend for the war Party of Molkte and company: they got a casus belli, of sorts, or, at least, Austro-Hungary did, and, at the same time, the tragedy removed the greatest enemy of war among the Central Powers’ plutocratic oligarchs.

So determined were the assassins leading the “German” military that, when they encountered unexpected resistance in Belgium from the Belgians and the French, they went insane. They had not expected this. They threw millions of soldiers through Belgium, expecting to quickly break-through, and encircle the French armies (Schliefen plan). That did not happen. French resistance became nearly suicidal: one day 27,000 French soldiers died in combat. Orders were given from above, by the Prussian General Staff, to mass massacre civilians. People such as general Ludendorff came to personally supervise combat. We have reports of two year old girls being assassinated.

Unsurprisingly, Ludendorff, a war criminal in 1914 already, was the most determined founder of the Nazi Party. After Bavarian soldiers fired a volley of gunfire into the top Nazis, in 1923, some were killed, and all fled, including Hitler… All, except general Ludendorff, who kept marching towards the troops.

Much of the preceding are inconvenient truths, because they keep bringing us back to the question of why did the USA help the Kaiserreich? Is the same old same old much older than has been suspected?

Some will say: ”So what?” But the same impulse that leads the American secret services to spy on democracy, the same Dark Side, was already fully in evidence a century ago.

Not only did the USA leadership goad the Kaiser into war, by promising an alliance, but it delivered said alliance: the USA provided the Kaiser’s henchmen with raw materials for explosives until 1917, making a national fortune in the process.

Socrates thought he lived according to: ”Unexamined politics is not worth having.”

However, he was tried because he had neglected a higher calling. The more pertinent: ”Unexamined emotions are not worth having.” The emotional system of an individual, just as that of a nation, or even that of current of thought, if they are not examined, are not worth having.

The emotions the ruling class conferred to the People in Germany, down below, were all wrong, deeply evil. Nietzsche understood this perfectly. The turn took only a few years. Nietzsche saw his friend and fellow musician Richard Wagner take a turn for the worst. Courageously Nietzsche denounced Wagner to the world in “Nietzsche Contra Wagner”. The most acute madness of the German People lasted from 1871 to 1945.

However, that same madness is still going in those who fail to distinguish between the fascist, mass murdering aggressors in 1914, and their victims. So the difference still has to be taught. No doubt the Germans have been much instructed on the subject. However, in the USA the moods, methods, ingrained emotions, and culture that made possible the betrayal of the Republic in 1914, 1915, 1916 and 1938, 1939, 1940 and 1941 are still beyond any suspicion.

German judges have decided to put on trial a SS who was only 19 when he obeyed orders at Oradour Sur Glane, contributing to the assassination, mostly by torture, of 700 innocent civilians, many women and children. 247 women and 205 children were burned alive in a church.

It’s not just about justice. It’s about education: soldiers cannot obey criminal orders, and contribute to a war crime. That brings a present-day quandary. Private Manning exposed to the world the killing of innocent civilians by the U.S. Army. Who was the criminal here? Manning, who did not obey orders, and revealed the crime (not really an accident, the recording show), or those who condemned him for not partaking in a criminal cover-up? Once again, under Obama, the Choom Gang president, all values are being inverted.

Exactly the game the Kaiserreich played, until the apocalyptic end of 1945.

Conclusion: To think anew, one has to break down the deepest emotional layers. What can do this? High emotions and passions. Pain. Even pain can be fine, if it is what’s needed to take out erroneous neurology (example: Germany suffered so much in WWII, that it made drastic reforms of its soul; Japan did not suffer as much, by a full order of magnitude, and thus did not improve its soul as much!)

Pain can help to define goodness when, or where, nothing else will. Thus pain helps create a valuable world. If emotion primes reason, only greater emotion will move in the sense of greater reason.

Imprinting passes by emotion first, as emotion is the universal, primary learning system. But it does not stop here. It then goes down all the way to genetics, though epigenetics (=”Lamarckism”). Apparently, pain can change one’s DNA: http://www.mcgill.ca/…/chronic-pain-alters-dna-marking… (Thanks to Alexi Helligar for the link).

Learning is everywhere, and all the way, as long as we open our hearts to it.

Patrice Aymé

***

Warning: My correct point of view is that the cause of WWI, was Nazism, Version 1.1. That opinion was obviously not shared by Bertrand Russel, the well known philosopher and logician. Why? Russell was one of the top Lords in Britain, and, obviously was very emotionally attached to the plutocratic principle that had made the grandson of Queen Victoria the dictator of Germany. If the Kaiser had won in the summer of 1914, the glory of Russell would have risen even higher. Of small things even great minds are made!

SOPHIA: WHEN POLITICS GOES NUTS.

July 13, 2008

CULTURE INDUCES PHYSIOLOGY. CHANGING EITHER MEANS CHANGING BOTH.
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Overview: “OPPRESSION IS WORSE THAN SLAUGHTER.” (Qur’an.)
Oppression, apartheid and racism are not just cultural, they create biologically the very conditions they then exploit. Submission in people is not just cultural, it is also EPIGENETIC and hereditary. A symptom of this physiological condition is the irritation some minorities and leftists have towards Senator Obama. The Conventional Wisdom is that they are jealous, and afraid that an African-American president would deprive them of their main reason to ask for hand outs (i.e., whining that they are the obvious victims of racism).

Nietzsche believed there was something as slave morality, and that a lot of mentality had to do with physiology. We buttress this paradigm with recent science and illustrate it with the case at hand. Obama’s history, up to the point he went to the US mainland, had little in common with that of the average American “black”. His formation was instead that of a worldly Euro-American. The cultural difference between Obama and the rest of the “blacks”, and the left, is so deep that it may be physiological. Obama, from his genesis, has the physiology of a master, whereas cultural African-Americans from their sad history, have the physiology corresponding to slave mentality. When Obama calls for change, he is ultimately calling for a PHYSIOLOGICAL change.

The Reverend Jesse Jackson himself, hinting to all this, put the debate in a physiological context of dramatic historical relevance.
***

NO REVERENCE FOR NUTS:
Jesse Jackson finds Barack Obama’s manhood unbearable. In a call to custom, harking back to slavery in the USA, Mr. Jackson, one of the great historical figures of the Civil Rights Movement, suggested to do to Obama what the white masters used to do to uppity black slaves. Jackson confided his secret desire about Obama, in a whispery voice to a fellow guest on Fox News: “I wanna cut his nuts out”. He accused his fellow Chicagoan of “talking down to black folks” by giving moral lectures to African-Americans. This was accompanied by an evocative pantomime, complete with sharp slicing gesture, and wind blown out of the stomach.

What is going on there? Mr. Jackson, a companion of Martin Luther King, was a trailblazer. He ran for the presidency twice, long ago, winning South Carolina. After listening to Bill Clinton belittling these achievements, the ease with which the previously unknown Obama is sweeping, tsunami like, towards the presidency, protected by the Secret Service for more than a year, as if he were already president, can only slightly exasperate Mr. Jackson. (In a sharp contrast, not only Mr. King was not protected, but he was threatened by law enforcement.)

Whining that one is oppressed, and begging has become an industry. Measures have been taken, in the USA and Europe, to put everybody back to work. But there is much more to it. Senator Obama wants not to be taken care of, but to take charge, to go from the mentality of a dependent to that of a master, to be the agent of change from SLAVE MENTALITY TO MASTER MENTALITY. Whereas Mr. Jackson, and most of the non violent Civil Rights Movement before him, plus much of the left, whine and resent, Senator Obama advises and commands. He has different hormones, and Jackson wants to cut them out. Let me explain.
***

THE MAJOR RELIGIONS AS SLAVE MORALITIES:
Nietzsche observed that there were essentially two types of moral systems:

1) The moral system of the slaves. Christianity, applied to the people, is the arch example of this “slave morality”. Christianity asks to turn the other cheek, and love one’s oppressor. Islam means “submission” outright, says everyone is a slave, and the Qur’an gaily gives plenty of orders to make it so. The slave morality is typically resentful and weak. “Good” is whatever pleases the masters, and whatever makes normal the subjugation one is submitted to. Strength of character, the little there is, is limited to “ressentiment” (Nietzsche’s French). Sartre would later insist that “bad faith” allows to eschew one’s responsibility as a free agent (a related complaint: if people are no willing to use their freedom, they are slaves).

2) The moral system of the masters is that “good” is whatever works to subjugate the masses. The masters are bold and strong. According to Nietzsche, the practice of the masters is to dominate people, themselves, and even the universe, by gaily accepting it for what it is (there is a relationship with the basic psychology of Islam, and, of course the Buddhist “eternal return of the same”, symbolized by the wheel).

There is an obvious observation, that Nietzsche does not seem to have focused on. Slaves need masters. Any slave morality comes equipped with a master morality to administer it. So the same morality has two interfaces: one for the slaves, one for the masters. This Janus like characteristic is totally blatant in the case of Christianity. Christianity is not just a slave morality, it’s also the morality imposed by the emperors of the later global Roman empire (Constantine, Constantius II, Theodosius, etc…) who were masters of such frantic dominance, that they destroyed civilization itself. Or tried to. (Nero with his lyre, and Caligula with his horse, were just children relative to them.)
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HOW THE MAJOR RELIGIONS MASTERED THE SLAVES:
With Christianity, the master came first, and there was just one, the Roman emperor Constantine, who created God in his image. Emperor Constantine picked up the slave religion, Christianity, and he tweaked it to make his rule more personal, even more terrible (Uthman, creator of the Qur’an, followed a similar pattern, but was killed for it). That took Constantine more than a decade of inventive modifications. Although he viewed himself as the most important bishop, he converted to “Orthodox Catholicism” (his own invention) only on his death bed. Emperor Constantine was happy to use an army made of ferocious Pagans (Franks and adepts of Myrthra). Constantine and his successors knew not to fight wolves with Christian sheep (too Christian an empire, just as a too Buddhist an empire, being empires of slaves, could only be wiped out, and that is exactly what happened to Constantinople facing Turks and Franks and to the Tangut, facing Genghis Khan: totally wiped out).

Islam, a descendant of Judeo-Christianism born in the desert, is less of a slave religion than Christianity because it calls for killing “unbelievers” and strictly obeying one’s superior. If one adds recommended behaviors in the Qur’an such as plundering and raping slave girls ASAP, it becomes clear it is more the bare bones metaphysics of a seventh century army rather than an entirely submissive message.

Historical evidence shows that Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Confucianism and Buddhism were relentlessly used to subjugate the masses in the service of powerful aristocracies that did not live at at all as they ordered their priests to preach. The most racist, the most incredible cruel, and also the oldest, and the most effective, by far, has been Hinduism, let it be said in passing. It maintained genetic separation for more than 3,500 years.

Constantine and his successors used Christianity to buttress for their degenerate fascism. They quickly made a bad situation worse, as they themselves became slaves to their own idiotic Christian ideology (so they destroyed intelligence and learning, the only way out of the mess). The Franks though, being less degenerate, less superstitious, and having a lot of taste for the highest values (like intelligence and learning) were able to refurbish Orthodox Catholicism from a mind seizure, into a tool.

The Romans had tried, but failed to conquer, Northern and Eastern Europe. The Franks did this, using Christianity as a Weapon of Mind Destruction. Priests  negotiated and threatened ahead of the Frankish armies. This undermined the resistance of the Pagan Germans, and eased the ferocious military assaults that followed. That type of conquest worked, and made Europe. It went beyond that Mediterranean Union that had long been the  Roman empire. The added sense  of spiritual purpose Judeo-Christianism, now fully tamed into a tool to tell the masses what was “good” and what was “evil” was crucial. The superstitious mess the all too religiously tolerant Romans had lived did not make for a unified sense of “good” and “evil” (the later Roman empire, having many major religions and deities, did not provide one “good” and one “evil”, and the secular state was too weak, from the lack of education, to impose the sense of “good” and “evil” the law imposes; the imposition of imperial Christianity made the situation worse, because it fought knowledge and wisdom, and anything secular, as it organized its cherished Apocalypse).

The Carolingian mix of Christian mellifluous discourse to induce torpor, and relentless military terror to break everything in the way, was reproduced later during the European invasion of the world (and especially the Americas). A pope from the Middle Ages put out an order declaring that Africans could be enslaved (a Merovingian law of the seventh century had outlawed slavery in the Imperium Francorum, hence the necessity of the papal amendment).
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HOW ENDOCRINOLOGY MAKES SUBMISSION HEREDITARY:
Nietzsche was insistent that a lot of human general philosophical, and mental posturing had to do with physiology. Well, we now can support Nietzschean guesses with a lot more science and history than he was aware of.

After the initial shock of combat, torture, terror and extermination, subjugated people often stay subjugated rather peacefully. In India, the monstrous racial divide imposed by Hinduism lasted nearly four thousand years, in no small part because the lower castes accepted it. Horrible torture and deaths were inflicted for the smallest transgressions of the racial caste order, most people, throughout history, would have died rather than accepting that. But the lower caste Indians learned to accept it, and to welcome it.

People reproduce from one generation to the next a subjugated mentality where the apex of manly resistance is resentment. Nietzsche heaped scorn on this.

But it’s now easy to guess how the cultural patterns of subjugation can become so stable. It’s not just a question of reading the wrong books. Culture induces physiology. CULTURE ENDURES AS PHYSIOLOGY. And it’s hereditary. It’s now known that a stressed out, or subjugated rat modifies its own genetic (to endure the subjugation better; this was discovered in 2008).

Subjugated animals are stressed. They have higher levels of many “stress” hormones, of a type so intolerable that they incite to frantic activity such as fleeing or to fighting. Generally they succeed in this, or get eaten. In any case, their problem is solved, and the stress hormones go away. But subjugated humans cannot do any of this. They cannot either fight or flee, because they are in chains (literal, or mental). Even the deliverance of becoming lunch is not an option. Instead, they have to sit, submit and seethe. And forever bathe in their stress hormones, something the last 400 millions years of evolution did not anticipate (it’s so evolutionary unexpected that stress is one of the most important factor in heart attacks). So their health degenerate, except of course if they learn culturally to find the intolerable tolerable. And the way to do that is to modify one’s EPIGENETIC, and that is probably what happens (just like for the rats, but way worse). Thus, what Nietzsche was whining about is a physiologically healthy reaction to a politically unacceptable situation. Under oppression, humans turn into lower species, literally. Nietzsche guessed this. In his strident attacks against German anti-Judaism, he pointed out that it’s not the Jews who should be kicked out of Germany (as the anti-Semites had proposed to do), but the German anti-Semites themselves, because they were clearly the inferior race.

When Pavlov’s dog expected a meal, acid appeared in his stomach. When a human expects sex or combat, the appropriate hormones go up, sometimes over very long periods (days). And it is also known that just as muscle grow when they are exercised, so does the activity of glands. Long term sexual abstinence leads to long term testosterone decrease for example. Just a (purely theoretical, and long in advance) anticipation of girlie action leads to an increase.

Hence an emasculated culture will lead to emasculated males, full of resentment, and systematic whining but without the tougher qualities of the true masters.  Rev. Jackson resentment for his leader’s testosterone are somewhat justified. The testosterone (by mechanisms we do not understand yet) is related to brains being more assertive, more prone to risk taking, more masterful of the universe at large. And the relation goes both ways. Anticipating masterful action or competition, the testosterone prone brain favors the production of the hormone, so that its boldness will rise to the occasion. In some fishes, the master is a super male, with completely different epigenetics. If the super male dies, another male fish goes through the epigenetic transformation. In some species, if all males die, some females’ epigenetics order the change into males… 

In other words, masters have the hormones to go with their masterful behavior, and when males are not around, they have to be created. Mr. Jackson is the big fish who could not transform himself in a super male. he, and a lot of the American left, could not find the discourse that could change the culture to the point the epigenetic itself would change.
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AMERICAN SLAVE MENTALITY VERSUS OBAMA’S CULTURE: 
American “blacks” are descendants of slaves, often with an appreciable genetic contribution from white masters. American culture reacted to this troubling fact by calling “black” anybody with any perceivable or known African genetic contribution. Some American “blacks” have colored hair and colored eyes, and some are more white than many “whites”. But never mind, “blackness” is the ultimate stain, don’t get a touch of it, nothing can remove it.

This extremism of white American racism harks back to the Bible and the theory of the “elected People”. In practice, in an important sense it means that white American racism was more racist than Nazism itself (Nazism recognized that race should be ignored if diluted enough, or if the individual and his family had proven superior enough). Crack Nazis prisoners in the USA were shocked by white American racism vis a vis their black GI guards. White American racism forced a total apartheid. A strong cultural apartheid was instituted.

The resulting black culture became a major world cultural contributor, superlative in music (jazz, rock) and pathos (blues). But one has to recognize that a lot of “black culture” has a lot to do with being a slave, and accepting one’s condition. Indeed, one of the main anchors of black culture has been Christianity, the slave religion indoctrinated by the white masters, a great conqueror, with Islam, of the true African spirit. Good black Americans are expected to embrace their condition by being submissive, resentful, and care free like children. Hence Obama’s reminder that “black folks” who chose to be parents have obligations.

Now who is Mr. Obama? Genetically speaking, he is exactly just as European as African. This does not make him so special, since some American “blacks” are mostly genetic Europeans. What makes Mr. Obama special is his cultural genesis. It’s mostly worldly, Euro-American, and masterful.

Indeed: Obama’s father was not a descendant of slaves, but of free Africans, first point. Second cultural point: genuine Africans do not live in awe of the Euro-American culture, they know the world is a bit more complicated than that. Third point: an African who travels to America will tower with contempt, as soon as he comes across American racism (not so much because racism is intrinsically “bad”, but, because there is often very little to justify it, and because American racism tend, or tended to express itself in the grossest, most unjustifiable ways). Mr. Obama saw his father enough to get these points across. Then Mr. Obama grew up in Hawaii, well known to be by far the less racist state in the USA. In particular, it had no black ghetto (Mr. Obama’s partly fictional memoirs feature some imaginary black characters. Eurasian would be more like it). Mr. Obama also grew up in Indonesia, where he could experience cultural shock, and that could only have made him stronger, like beaten up steel thrown in cold water. Mr. Obama was in great part educated by his white grand parents. Finally last but not least, he was educated forever in one the world’s most elite private schools, Punahou. Punahou instills the morality of mastery, and many leaders have been formed there.
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DID U.S. PLUTOCRACY CHANGE U.S. EPIGENETICS?
As the USA got into the disastrous invasion of Iraq, the protests of the US population were very far from shutting it down. Instead there was more than 80% approval for whatever the White House proposed to do. The population was eager to exhibit its submission to its masters in Washington. Part of the humiliation was to swallow cognitive garbage. US citizens submitted to an intense propaganda of lies and disinformation. It was not physiologically innocuous: as US citizens submitted to this mangling of their cognitive dignity, and capability, it is not excluded that they suppressed the entire part of their hormonal and epigenetic system in charge of cognition. So the incapacity to solve the problems of the USA may now be an epigenetic problem. There are plenty of indications of this. Very simple solutions to many problems have been found, and deployed, worldwide, but not in the USA. After all, it’s the only nation to have stayed stuck in the Middle Ages with units of measurement, clearly a deep failure of character and/or intelligence. Barack Obama pointed to this recently by saying all Americans could say going abroad was “Merci beaucoup”. He was immediately accused, once again to be an “elitist”. Strange accusation in a country where the elite of the hyper rich is widely admired and allowed to buy elections.
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Conclusion: POLITICAL SUBMISSION CAUSES GENETIC DEVOLUTION.
Many groups of people have been oppressed, and are oppressed. Women are a case in point. They obviously were more equal before the rise of agriculture and civilization (because their responsibilities were greater, to start with: most of the calories were brought by women). This is a grave situation. As the Qur’an puts it bluntly: “…And slay them wherever ye find them, and drive them out of the places whence they drove you out. Because indeed OPPRESSION IS WORSE THAN SLAUGHTER.” (Sura 2:191 of “the Cow”). The Qur’an is right on that particular point. Oppression can be worse than slaughter, or murder, because it changes people into SUBHUMANS, just as the obverse condition of opportunity changes normal fishes into SUPERFISHES.

After Nazism rolled by, and crashed, and colonialism was inverted, racism became an unpopular concept. But that does not mean that it does not happen nevertheless. If the preceding is mostly true (and everything indicates it is), INFERIOR RACES EXIST, BUT THEY ARE CREATED BY OPPRESSION. Often the oppression has to do with human oppressors, but not always. People living in bad surroundings are also oppressed. This says that the problem of racism is not all in the mind, but also in the body, that the situation is worse than thought, and that to fix things up, it’s not just a matter of chanting: “Give peace a chance”, as one lays in a five star hotel bed (a sneak attack on John Lennon’s naivety). 

People whose epigenetics is turned on so as to shut down a lot of what makes them human are made into practitioners of the baser instincts. It’s bad in all sorts of ways: because it threatens civilization, and because there is a compulsion in humans to oppress further, or destroy who is perceived as inferior, it’s an invitation to genocide.

This may help to explain why the Roman empire degenerated, and why plutocracies in general degenerate, maybe even why the USA has been degenerating. Plutocracy, the rule of the rich, submits the rest of the population, shutting down the full expression of their freedom, hence of their genes. The submitted become a genetically inferior race overnight. Extend this over the generations, and the problem is akin to creating a subspecies. During the European Middle Ages, the nobles and the commoners (“villains”, namely “ugly” in modern French) looked racially different, just as in India the upper castes looked (and genetically are) different from the lower castes.

Masters and slaves tend to be comforted in their situations by the biology induced by their social conditions.

Master races are not a myth, but they were designed. Hence we can use the process the other way, not to turn some into inferior beings and oppress them further, but to turn more people into superior beings.

The more free and superior people there are, the more we will be able to confront the many riddles that baffle us, and seize the opportunities hidden therein. Whereas in the past civilization, especially in the desert, needed armies of slaves, to set up superior irrigation, now it needs armies of superior minds, to set up superior thinking.
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Patrice Ayme
https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/
Tyranosopher.

 

P/S: The term “epigenetics” refers to all and any machinery changing gene expression in ways stable between cell divisions, and sometimes between generations. The original idea, due to Lamarck (circa 1800), was ridiculed, because it contradicted the theory of evolution long established by breeders of domesticated species. Epigenetics, as originally conceived, does not involve changes in the underlying DNA of the organism. The idea was that environmental factors can cause an organism’s genes to behave (or “express themselves”) differently, even though the genes themselves don’t change. The epigenetic changes can be instantaneous (as in the fishes alluded to above). In a further twist, some now consider proven that direct DNA change can occur, by direct gene transfers between species (2008)).

The main theme above is that populations held in slavery may undergo epigenetic changes making them more accepting of submission. And that it is no coincidence that Obama does not behave that way.