Archive for September, 2012

I Am Not Religious…

 

…because I came across this interesting piece on the web today:

They make tools and use them to acquire foods and for social displays; they have sophisticated hunting strategies requiring cooperation, influence and rank; they are status conscious, manipulative and capable of deception; they can learn to use symbols and understand aspects language including some relational syntax, concepts of number and numerical sequence; and they are capable of spontaneous planning for a future state or event.

They live in large multiple-male and multiple-female social groups called communities. Within a community, a definite social hierarchy is dictated by the position of an individual and the influence the individual has on others. They live in a leaner hierarchy in which more than one individual may be dominant enough to dominate other members of lower rank. The alpha male is the highest-ranking male which controls the group and maintains order during any disputes. In their society, the ‘dominant male’ does not always have to be the largest or strongest male, but rather the most manipulative and political male which can influence the goings on within a group. Males typically attain dominance through cultivating allies who will provide support for that individual in case of future ambitions for power. The lead male regularly displays by making his normally slim coat puffed up to increase view size and charge to look as threatening and as powerful as possible. This serves to intimidate other members in an attempt to hold on to power and maintain authority, and it may be fundamental to the lead male’s holding on to his status. Lower-ranking males will show respect by making submissive gestures in body language or reaching out their hands. Female will show deference to the lead male by presenting their hindquarters.

Females also have a hierarchy which is influenced by the position of a female individual within a group. In some communities, the young females may inherit high status from a high-ranking mother. The females will also form allies to dominate lower-ranking females. In contrast to males, which have a main purpose of acquiring dominant status for access to mating privileges and sometimes violent domination of subordinates, females acquire dominant status for access to resources such as food. High-ranking females will often get first access to resources. In general, both genders acquire dominant status to improve social standing within a group.

It is often the females who choose the lead male. For a male to win the alpha status, he must gain acceptance from the females in the community. Females have to make sure their group is going to places that supply them with enough food. In some cases, a group of dominant females will oust a lead male  which is not to their preference and rather back up the other male who they see potential of leading the group as a successful alpha male.

This is an excerpt from Wikipedia on the social structure of Chimpanzees,  our last common ancestors and closest living relatives. Chimpanzees are members of the Hominidae family, along with gorillashumans, and orangutans. They split from the human branch of the family about 4 to 6 million years ago. The two chimpanzee species are the closest living relatives to humans, all being members of the Hominini tribe (along with extinct species of Hominina subtribe).

So why am I not religious? Because the above makes more sense to me in explaining our existence than this crap:

[1:1] In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth,
[1:2] the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters.
[1:3] Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.
[1:4] And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness.
[1:5] God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.
[1:6] And God said, “Let there be a dome in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.”
[1:7] So God made the dome and separated the waters that were under the dome from the waters that were above the dome. And it was so.
[1:8] God called the dome Sky. And there was evening and there was morning, the second day.
[1:9] And God said, “Let the waters under the sky be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear.” And it was so.
[1:10] God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good.
[1:11] Then God said, “Let the earth put forth vegetation: plants yielding seed, and fruit trees of every kind on earth that bear fruit with the seed in it.” And it was so.
[1:12] The earth brought forth vegetation: plants yielding seed of every kind, and trees of every kind bearing fruit with the seed in it. And God saw that it was good.
[1:13] And there was evening and there was morning, the third day.
[1:14] And God said, “Let there be lights in the dome of the sky to separate the day from the night; and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years,
[1:15] and let them be lights in the dome of the sky to give light upon the earth.” And it was so.
[1:16] God made the two great lights – the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night – and the stars.
[1:17] God set them in the dome of the sky to give light upon the earth,
[1:18] to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good.
[1:19] And there was evening and there was morning, the fourth day.
[1:20] And God said, “Let the waters bring forth swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the dome of the sky.”
[1:21] So God created the great sea monsters and every living creature that moves, of every kind, with which the waters swarm, and every winged bird of every kind. And God saw that it was good.
[1:22] God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.”
[1:23] And there was evening and there was morning, the fifth day.
[1:24] And God said, “Let the earth bring forth living creatures of every kind: cattle and creeping things and wild animals of the earth of every kind.” And it was so.
[1:25] God made the wild animals of the earth of every kind, and the cattle of every kind, and everything that creeps upon the ground of every kind. And God saw that it was good.
[1:26] Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.”
[1:27] So God created humankind in his image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
[1:28] God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.”
[1:29] God said, “See, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food.
[1:30] And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so.
[1:31] God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.

 

 

 

 

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