Thursday, April 16, 2009

Last blog entry I forgot to post links, but most of the places where I obtained my information from are in the same links as in this post. Sorry, for the inconvenience. 

7 deadly sins (continued)...

We are all guilty of it slacking off at one point or another. How many times have you not gone to the gym because you were preoccupied doing something else. How much time did you spent daydreaming instead of doing you're work? How many times have you called in sick?

Humans today are more inclined to be lazy. Our ancestors couldn't. They were busy surviving in a world that was very threatening and hard to reach resources. On the other hand, humans today are not busy surviving, but busy thriving for the pursuit of luxury, since our basic needs are easily obtained.

As you can see humans today have a better lifestyle than any of our ancestors did in the past. Our early ancestors resources were scarce and unpredictable, so they had to conserve as much of the resources as possible in order to survive. There were so many threats, such as starvation,predators, drastic climate changes and now we have evolved to the point where we can get the most out of something the easiest way possible.

In our day and age we have plentiful resources and few threats. We don't have to worry about a hungry ferocious lion attacking us.

In today's day and age we have been able to thrive beyond our wildest dreams because of technology as long as we had self-control and willpower. Our ancestors did not have much time to think or plan for long term because they were busy surviving.

Perhaps why some people are lazy/unmotivated is because they  still feel these primitive tendencies to not react unless our lives are on the line because they are so used to immediate stimulation and at the moment distractions that planning and carrying out goals for the future is hard to carry out for them. 

Greed is highly responsible for the the downfall of our economy. What is greed? Greed is the excessive desire to acquire or  posses more than one needs or deserves that can negatively affect their and others outcome/quality of life. 

What is greed responsible for in our country according to an article I read at

  • " rush tax cuts that has given money to the rich and taken away from the poor 

  • led to immigration policy in which hundreds of poor men and women die every year as they struggle across the desert for jobs that the northe promises them.

  • accounts for the efforts to take profitability out of the pensions and  health insurance of working men and women.

  • Is responsible for the fact that so many Americans have no health insurance and the fact that the reform of medicare was a fraud.

  • causes newspapers to overestimate their circulation

What drives us to become greedy? How did it come about?
Our ancestors like us competed against one another to come out on top. The difference between them and us is that our ancestors competed against one another to survive, meet their basic needs. We compete for desires(luxury). that have gone out of control. We desire more than necessary. 

It seems people today are getting more greedy because we have times to and our primitive ancestors did not have the time for such luxuries because they were too busy surviving.

What is lust?
Lust is an overbearing craving for sex.

Are you guilty of the sin of lust?
 Take the lust test and find out.

Where did lust come from? 
It originated from our primitive ancestors and we possibly developed is through nature and/or nurture.

When did lust originate?
Ever since humans have engaged in sexual intercourse humans have developed the capacity to feel pleasure when engaging in sex. 

Why humans are lustful?
 The need to pass on our genes, so that are kind will prevail.

How humans are lustful?
Lust can be consummated through fornication,adultery,incest,rape, and sodomy.

What is pride?
Pride is the excessive self love to the point where you neglect others.

Where did pride originate?
From our primitive  ancestors who passed it along by nature and/or nurture.

When did pride originate?
Ever since we have accumulated  and cherished certain things that valued our self-worth.

Why did pride develop?
Possibly because our primitive ancestors lived in a deadly environment whey they had to remain the strongest so they had to obtain the most resources to defend themselves and show off their potential to intruders,so as to deter them from trying to invade territory or take over their resources.

How did pride develop?
Pride manifested probably from selfishness, you are so in love with yourself you are unable  to see other peoples needs or your needs. Which, in essence would make society crumble, since we are social animals and need to work as a team to survive and pride gets in the way of that. 

For instance have you ever heard of the tale of Narcissus?

Narcissus is about a beautiful young man who's fate would be death unless he "would live to an old age if he did not look at himself" according to  what Tiresias the seer told his parents the river God Cephissus and the nymph Liriop. However, Narcissus fell to his unfortunate fate because of his vanity. Many nymph girls fell in love with him, but he rejected all of them. One of them was a nymph called Echol, who was so hurt by his rejection she secluded herself from the world and disappeared only leaving a mournful whisper.Subsequently, the goddess Nemesis heard the rejected girls prayers for vengeance and planned to have Narcissus fall in love with his own reflection. Inevitably, he was so in love with himself that he fell in the water,drowned and died. 

What is wrath?

Wrath is a strong, stern fierce anger that results in punishment or vengeance upon another person.

Where did wrath come from?

Wrath originated from the concept "fight of flight response" which is our bodies innate response that prepared our body to "fight" or "flee" from a perceived attack,harm,or threat to our survival.

When was wrath developed?
Ever since there has been someone or something that has contact with us in some form, primitive ages.

How did wrath develop?
When our fight or flight response is activated, sequence of nerve firing  occur and chemicals like adrenaline and non-adrenaline and cortisol are released into the bloodstream,which speed the heart rate,slowing digestion,shunting bloodily to major muscle groups, general effect on sphin center of the liberation of nutrients for muscular action,dilation of blood vessels for muscles,inhibition of zacrimonial gland,and salivation, dilation of pupils, relaxation of bladder, evacuation of colon, inhibition of erection,auditory exclusion,tunnel vision, acceleration of instantaneous reflexes and effecting other automatic nervous functions that give the body a burst of energy or strength.

Originally the "fight or flight" response was to enable us to physically fight or run away when faced with a threatening animal, now modern day times we use it in situations such as traffic, or a stressful day at work. Too much of perceived stress called chronic stress can cause damage to the body as opposed to the relaxation response.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The 7 deadly Sins

The 7 Deadly Sins

The seven deadly sins can be so desctructive that they can lead to death of someone or the individual, literally and figuratively speaking. Evolutionary psychology helps expalains how these sins came to be. 

 Come to think of it death is an experience not many people want to endure, but the fear of death is benficial in an evolutionary perspective.

Death-Why we fear dying? 

We fear dying because we are not 100% sure what happens to us when we die. No one has come back  from the dead to tell us that there is an afterlife at least no one has told me.

1. Unkown
2. Pain
3. Not being able to reproduce(evolutionary perspective)

Secondly, another reason why we fear dying is pain. It is not a nice feeling. I guess unless you are a macicist. Humans can only tolerate so much pain before they give out. Yet, at the same time pain can be beneficial because it lets us become aware of danger. It is a technique we have adapted to. On the other hand pain is great because it lets us know we are still alive wether it be emotional of physical. 

Last but not least, another reason why we fear dying maybe because of not being to reproduce or it could be vice versa. Therfore, we reproduce because we know eventually we will die and want to leave a peace of us behind to feel like we live on in some way after we perish. Therefore, we adapted to have children probably partly due to the fear of not existing anymore.

The egyptians went as far as to mummify their bodies and buring themselves with their treasure because they thought by doing this they would gain everlasting life by preserving their bodies.
What about people who don't  want to have children, do they fear death?
They probably do too. They just might live on through their art,projects, etc. 

Unless you are firmly convinced that Jesus rose from the dead , which seems to be all circumstancial evidence as far as my knowledge goes. That fear of death will always haunt us till the day we die. No one can escape it. It will come after you. 

The subject of death reminds me of a movie. It is like death is really alivea and comes after you when it is your time to die even if you cheat death. Thank goodness death is not anything like that movie or else we would always be on the run. 


Envy- A Deadly Sin 

The green eyed-monster. Most people feel envious at one time or another throughtout their lives; perhaps because a friend has a great boyfriend that they would like to have or a person is very weathly and they would like to have that. Though you are likely to hide these feeling because of social alienation. Feeling envious can be bad for ones self it decreases a persons self-esteem and depression.

Also, there is a common misconception that envy and jeolousy mean the same thing. It is not, and should not be used interchangebly. Jealousy is the fear of losing something you already have to another. For example, one might feel jealous of losing her boyfriend to her hot neighbor. 
Envy is when you want something from someone or something you don't have. For example, your employee was promoted to a position you wanted. 

They have done studies on envy and told participants to imagine scenarios where they were envious of various people. Research has discovered that envy elicited parts of the brain in the dorsal anterior circulate-cortex(dacc). It is the area that processes both physical and emotional pain. The other end of the spectrum research has measured levels of schadenfreude, which is the feeling of pleasure at the envied ones misfortune. Which, they say appears to be quite normal and common. However.most people would not admit to it, especially when it comes to people their close to. 

Feelings  of envy come from comparing ourselves to others, which is called social comparison. It can be both good and bad. It can be good because it can motivate us to strive toward our goals. Although it can also be bad because it can lead to anger and frustration  at not aquiring ones goals because of envy. Supposedly, we only are only envious of other people who have comparible skill sets to our own, so we are only envious of another person if we believe we can aquire what the other person were envious of has. 

Anyway, we have adapted the feeling of envy from our primitive ancestors possibly because it could drive animals to seek attention of our mothers, allowing them to obtain more food and attention, in order for them to be more likely to survive. Fortunatley, we have evolved to be much less instinctual and more thoughtful human beings, This, meaning that we may naturally feel envy and are secretly happy about the misfortune of others we envy we hide these feelings through self control. 

Gluttony- A Deadly Sin

Gluttony is consuming more than one requires. It some cultures eating too much is seen as a wasteful and taking away from the needy. It is also viewed by some people as an analogy to control ourselves, If we are unable to control our eating habits, we probably might not be able to control our habits such as lust, covetousness, anger, etc. 

However, according to evolutionary pshcyology some of us give into tempation of overeating because of our primitive ancestral history. We posess a basic survival instinct which is to eat until we are fully satisfied. Our legacy was to store as much energy as possible  since  there was little food and uncertain for most of our human evolutionary history. The problem with this is that eating more does not really satisfy us we just think it does. 

Therefore,  our instincts tell us to keep eating we beyond our satisfaction level. Even worse, the foods we desire the most are the worst for us- high in calories and sugars because they were once rare and valued  as the best type of food to eat to fight starvation. Now, these foods are plentiful in excess, As a result, listening to our basic instinct has led to the obesity epidemic. 

Not only has eating too much been the cause of obesity but also lack of exercise. Our primitive ancestors had to go through great physical effort to aquire enough for survival. Which means they were fit. Unlike, now how food is abundant and only a few minutes drive away o a restaraunt or food market. Even worse, now many places supersize their food which adds even more calories. 
Now some of us have adapted to our overeating impulses by willpower. 

Actually willpower (self control) is the best way to control food intake rather than dieting. By dieting  we are going against one of our most used intincts which has helped most of our ancestors survive. When our body is deprived of foods we crave, we get agitated. Most people fail in the first 3 days on a diet. Willpower is required and helps when you know what to expect. Research shows that is takes 72 hours of feeling cravings to control the beast. Then it takes another couple of weeks before dieting becomes easier. 

In conclusion, evolution has come along way in helping us adapt so that we can survive. However, obesity rates are increasing, and obesity is bad for your health, so we need to develop mechanisms to lead healthier lives or we might die not from starvation this time but from gluttony. 

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Darwin Day!!!

Darwin Day!!!
Happy Holiday!
It was Darwin's 200th Birthday on Feb. 12th!To all the scientifically minded people (many who hold religious beliefs), atheists, and agnostics have a day to celebrate, Darwin Day! All over the world there were celebrations and events. Charles Darwin was a scientist famous for his theories on natural selection and evolution, culminating in a book he published in 1859 of "On the Origin of Species". Celebrate!1) Cheers once for Darwin’s inspiration;
He once said, " My theology is a simple muddle: I cannot look at the universe as a result of blind chance, yet I can see no evidence of beneficent Design"Clearly his logic told him that there has to be an explanation for all that was created2) Cheers twice for Darwin’s intelligence/curiosity. It helped him to discover the theories of evolution and natural selection.His observations and experiments allowed him to come up with conclusions that made sense about how all things were made.3) Cheers thrice for Darwin’s courage w/o his determination

to get his work out there despite criticism from some church officials and other individuals. For his ideas he was labeled as a "heretic" by some. The Church of England attacked him clamorously. Fun Facts

1. Darwin had a zeal for strange food. He once ate an owl which he found "indescribable."armadillos and agoutis (the rodents were "best meat I ever tasted," he said). 2. Darwin dreamed of becoming a doctor, but he could not stand the sight of blood. Therefore, he studied divinity and became a rural cleric.3. Darwin’s' nose almost cost him the voyage on the Beagle.4. A Mountain was named after Charles Darwin.5. The full title of "On the Origin of Species was On the Origin of Species by means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life.6. Darwin did not coin the phrase" Survival of the Fittest" It was actually Herbert Spencer7. Like Einstein, Darwin married his cousin, his first cousin to be exact.8. Darwin lost his faith in Christianitydue to the fact; he could not understand why God could allow such inhumanities as he witnessed such as slavery and the awful living conditions of the Tierra del Fuego
9. Darwin was a Backgammon enthusiastEvery night between 8-8:30 pm Darwin would play 2 games of backgammon with Emma. For years, he kept score of the game.
10. The Church finally apologized to Darwin.

When Darwin’s’ work was finally accessible to the public the church attacked him clamorously. Though, 126 years after his death, the Church of England finally apologized to Darwin.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

It's the Ice Age!!!

Tonight, it will feel like the Ice Age!!! It will be South Florida’s coldest temperatures of the year !!! Remember to water your plants. Fortunately, the weather will be back to normal by the weekend. Dress warmly. Wear lots of clothing. Also, here is a little tip; rub your hands together to produce heat, it helps. Our prehistoric ancestors, the Neanderthals whom existed 100,000 to 40,000 years ago during the ice age adapted to the cold similar to how we currently adapt by using fire, dwelling in caves, and using clothing. The difference is that access to protect ourselves from the cold is much easier due to technology. We have electrical houses for heaters and we do not have to hunt for fur on animals anymore. We have shopping stores nearby that we can purchase them from. Last but not least, we have invented a hot beverage called hot tea to help us keep warm!!! See how much we have evolved.

In fact, not only do tools help us adapt to extreme climate, but so does our physiology. According to Bergmann's Rule he observed that within the same species of warm blooded animals, populations having less body massed individuals are more often found in warmer environments, while those with more body mass live in colder locations.. Joel Allen went further in his study than Bergman by observing that the length of the limbs and other body parts helped them cope in certain environments. Long limbs help ward off heat in warm climates and short limbs and a stocky body help retain heat for cold environments. Last but not least, our biological responses help us adapt to the environment. Muscle activity increases when we shiver and results in heat production. Our basal metabolism rate increases, fat insulates in our organs, and/or our blood flow pattern changes. Warm Climates; sweating is a mechanism for the clearing of too much body heat. Humans have many mechanisms to cope in cold weather thanks to our intelligence and adaptability. As Gloria Gaynor sang “I WILL SURVIVE” and so will you!!!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Careful, it's a jungle out there!!! You could get eaten.

Miami is a perfect combination of a tropical paradise and an urban oasis. It, like other cities is reminiscent of a jungle, because of the variety of people that inhabit the city and how we all our competing to survive; akin to animals. Darwin had a theory that the progression of evolution was based on his theory natural selection. Basically, the term was later coined “survival of the fittest”. Darwin said that "In the struggle for survival, the fittest win out at the expense of their rivals because they succeed in adapting themselves best to their environment."

Those who adapted the best will be able to thrive and create more offspring. Humans are unique to other animals in that we have evolved in a way where we have developed mechanisms in which we use to not only to survive but experience a better quality of life; also more so than others in our kind . In essence, our wit has allowed us to claw our way to the top in a less dangerous manner. However, despite rules and mechanisms there are people who will break them and will pounce on you when you are vulnerable; hence, yes, humans are animals too. We have come a long way since the cavemen days, but be wary there are people who can’t tame the beast within.  It’s a jungle out there!!!You could get eaten.

            For instance, we have evolved to the point where we have developed evolutionary mechanisms that tend to restrain aggressive behavior because it is dangerous and can be deadly. The other day I was cut off by a driver in the street. His car crashed into to mine. I was angry and like what most people would have done in my situation I did not react violently, since there were other means to solve the situation. I called the police and filed a police report, so that the perpetrators would be fined and would have to pay for the damage. We have evolved where many matters can be dealt with through communication. Contrary to our prehistoric ancestors, they would have probably reacted in a physically volatile manner that may have resulted in their deaths. Now, that we are more sensible beings we can prevent less harm by using our wit (evolutionary mechanisms).