Stephen Sparrow writes to say he “wonders how the Darwinista will explain this”:
We can put it under the general question of “Why do animals play?”. It was raised a couple months back at The Baffler:
In a wide-ranging essay, Graeber not only insists that insects and crustaceans play (not clear what that means in the context) but explores some currents in non-Darwinian evolutionary thought. Not especially sympathetic to Darwinism, he offers a helpful explanation of emergentism and panpsychism …
My own view is that animals play because they like to do things, and find themselves with time to spare when they have no pressing needs. If the swan needed to feed herself or offspring, she would. But she apparently doesn’t, so she feeds fish instead.
Does it help her leave fertile offspring? Maybe, maybe not. The time exists, no matter how she uses it.
Anyone who has ever done a crossword puzzle in a train station, thinking, “I don’t usually have time for word games but the train is late,” will understand.
The Darwinists? Oh, Stephen, they’ll put out a tender to starving assistant profs maybe, for the least lame explanation. Or—at minimum—an explanation that a New York Times science writer would believe. The important thing is to write their names and the name of their hero over all of life.
Follow UD News at Twitter!