Evolution of human mind best understood by studying bees, says prof

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According to “Evolution of Human ‘Super-Brain’ Tied to Development of Bipedalism, Tool-Making” ScienceDaily (Apr. 20, 2011),

Scientists seeking to understand the origin of the human mind may want to look to honeybees — not ancestral apes — for at least some of the answers, according to a University of Colorado Boulder archaeologist.

It’s not known how many entomologists agree but,

CU-Boulder Research Associate John Hoffecker said there is abundant fossil and archaeological evidence for the evolution of the human mind, including its unique power to create a potentially infinite variety of thoughts expressed in the form of sentences, art and technologies. He attributes the evolving power of the mind to the formation of what he calls the “super-brain,” or collective mind, an event that took place in Africa no later than 75,000 years ago.[ … ]

Among other creatures on Earth, the honeybee may be the best example of an organism that has mastered the trick of communicating complex information — including maps of food locations and information on potential nest sites from one brain to another — using their intricate “waggle dance.”

“Humans obviously evolved a much wider range of communication tools to express their thoughts, the most important being language,” said Hoffecker, a fellow at CU’s Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research. “Individual human brains within social groups became integrated into a neurologic Internet of sorts, giving birth to the mind.”

So that’s it then. That’s how we know.

File under: Theories of consciousness, along with the following:

In a recent book on consciousness, Gerald Edelman and Giulio Tononi helpfully provide a list—which they emphasize is not exhaustive—of theories that account for the relationship between mind and brain, including Spinoza’s dual-aspect theory, Malebranche’s occasionalism, Leibniz’s parallelism and doctrine of preestablished harmony, identity theory, central state theory, neutral monism, logical behaviorism, token physicalism, type physicalism, token epiphenomenalism, type epiphenomenalism, anomalous monism, emergent materialism, eliminative materialism, and functionalism (various types).

The Spiritual Brain, p. 110

Tag as Superbrain: (“jackpot” theory of consciousness)

4 Replies to “Evolution of human mind best understood by studying bees, says prof

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    Despite CU-Boulder Research Associate John Hoffecker assertion that ‘there is abundant fossil and archaeological evidence for the evolution of the human mind’, He may want to check with other more prominent anthropologists; Such as Anthropologist Ian Tattersall who is curator at the American Museum of Natural History;

    Evolution of the Genus Homo – Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences – Tattersall, Schwartz, May 2009
    Excerpt: “although Homo neanderthalensis had a large brain, it left no unequivocal evidence of the symbolic consciousness that makes our species unique.” — “Unusual though Homo sapiens may be morphologically, it is undoubtedly our remarkable cognitive qualities that most strikingly demarcate us from all other extant species. They are certainly what give us our strong subjective sense of being qualitatively different. And they are all ultimately traceable to our symbolic capacity. Human beings alone, it seems, mentally dissect the world into a multitude of discrete symbols, and combine and recombine those symbols in their minds to produce hypotheses of alternative possibilities. When exactly Homo sapiens acquired this unusual ability is the subject of debate.”

    Evolution of the Genus Homo – Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences – Tattersall, Schwartz, May 2009
    Excerpt: “Definition of the genus Homo is almost as fraught as the definition of Homo sapiens. We look at the evidence for “early Homo,” finding little morphological basis for extending our genus to any of the 2.5–1.6-myr-old fossil forms assigned to “early Homo” or Homo habilis/rudolfensis.”

    Further notes;

    Darwin’s mistake: Explaining the discontinuity between human and nonhuman minds:
    Excerpt: There is a profound functional discontinuity between human and nonhuman minds. We argue that this discontinuity pervades nearly every domain of cognition and runs much deeper than even the spectacular scaffolding provided by language or culture can explain. We hypothesize that the cognitive discontinuity between human and nonhuman animals is largely due to the degree to which human and nonhuman minds are able to approximate the higher-order, systematic, relational capabilities of a physical symbol system (i.e. we are able to understand information). http://www.bbsonline.org/Prepr.....eprint.htm

    Origin of the Mind: Marc Hauser
    Excerpt: “Researchers have found some of the building blocks of human cognition in other species. But these building blocks make up only the cement footprint of the skyscraper that is the human mind”,,,

    Earliest humans not so different from us, research suggests – February 2011
    Excerpt: Shea argues that comparing the behavior of our most ancient ancestors to Upper Paleolithic Europeans holistically and ranking them in terms of their “behavioral modernity” is a waste of time. There are no such things as modern humans, Shea argues, just Homo sapiens populations with a wide range of behavioral variability.

    “Something extraordinary, if totally fortuitous, happened with the birth of our species….Homo sapiens is as distinctive an entity as exists on the face of the Earth, and should be dignified as such instead of being adulterated with every reasonably large-brained hominid fossil that happened to come along.”
    Anthropologist Ian Tattersall
    (curator at the American Museum of Natural History)

    Man is indeed as unique, as different from all other animals, as had been traditionally claimed by theologians and philosophers. Evolutionist Ernst Mayr

    When we consider the remote past, before the origin of the actual species Homo sapiens, we are faced with a fragmentary and disconnected fossil record. Despite the excited and optimistic claims that have been made by some paleontologists, no fossil hominid species can be established as our direct ancestor.
    Richard Lewontin – Harvard Zoologist

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    further note:

    Why should we ever consider a process, which is utterly incapable of ever generating any complex functional information at even the most foundational levels of molecular biology, to suddenly, magically, have the ability to generate our brain which can readily understand and generate functional information? A brain which has been repeatedly referred to as ‘the Most Complex Structure in the Universe’? The authors never seem to consider the ‘spiritual angle’ for why we would have such a unique capacity for such abundant information processing. This following short video, and verses, are very clear as to what the implications of this evidence means to us and for us:

    Modus Tollens – It Is Impossible For Evolution To Be True – T.G. Peeler – video

    Genesis 3:8
    And they (Adam and Eve) heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day…

    John 1:1-1
    In the beginning, the Word existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.

    A very strong piece of suggestive evidence, which persuasively hints at a unique relationship that man has with ‘The Word’ of John 1:1, is found in these following articles which point out the fact that ‘coincidental scientific discoveries’ are far more prevalent than what should be expected from a materialistic perspective,:

    In the Air – Who says big ideas are rare? by Malcolm Gladwell
    Excerpt: This phenomenon of simultaneous discovery—what science historians call “multiples”—turns out to be extremely common. One of the first comprehensive lists of multiples was put together by William Ogburn and Dorothy Thomas, in 1922, and they found a hundred and forty-eight major scientific discoveries that fit the multiple pattern. Newton and Leibniz both discovered calculus. Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace both discovered evolution. Three mathematicians “invented” decimal fractions. Oxygen was discovered by Joseph Priestley, in Wiltshire, in 1774, and by Carl Wilhelm Scheele, in Uppsala, a year earlier. Color photography was invented at the same time by Charles Cros and by Louis Ducos du Hauron, in France. Logarithms were invented by John Napier and Henry Briggs in Britain, and by Joost Bürgi in Switzerland. ,,, For Ogburn and Thomas, the sheer number of multiples could mean only one thing: scientific discoveries must, in some sense, be inevitable.

    List of multiple discoveries
    Excerpt: Historians and sociologists have remarked on the occurrence, in science, of “multiple independent discovery”. Robert K. Merton defined such “multiples” as instances in which similar discoveries are made by scientists working independently of each other.,,, Multiple independent discovery, however, is not limited to only a few historic instances involving giants of scientific research. Merton believed that it is multiple discoveries, rather than unique ones, that represent the common pattern in science.

    The following video is far more direct in establishing the ‘spiritual’ link to man’s ability to learn new information, in that it shows that the SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) scores for students showed a steady decline, for seventeen years from the top spot or near the top spot in the world, after the removal of prayer from the public classroom by the Supreme Court in 1963. Whereas the SAT scores for private Christian schools have consistently remained at the top, or near the top, spot in the world:

    The Real Reason American Education Has Slipped – David Barton – video

    The following video is very suggestive to a ‘spiritual’ link in man’s ability to learn new information in that the video shows that almost every, if not every,founder of each discipline of modern science had a deep Christian connection:

    Christianity Gave Birth To Science – Dr. Henry Fritz Schaefer – video

    further note:

    Why the Quantum? It from Bit? A Participatory Universe?
    Excerpt: In conclusion, it may very well be said that information is the irreducible kernel from which everything else flows. Thence the question why nature appears quantized is simply a consequence of the fact that information itself is quantized by necessity. It might even be fair to observe that the concept that information is fundamental is very old knowledge of humanity, witness for example the beginning of gospel according to John: “In the beginning was the Word.” Anton Zeilinger – a leading expert in quantum teleportation:

    “Information is information, not matter or energy. No materialism which does not admit this can survive at the present day.”
    Norbert Weiner – MIT Mathematician – Father of Cybernetics

  3. 3
    bornagain77 says:

    Evolution Vs. The Honey Bee – an Architectural Marvel – video

  4. 4
    Mung says:

    If it were the birds and the bees I’d understand, but just the bees?

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