During the millions of years that our deep nature evolved complex adaptations converged to great reproductive success.
These deep structures, styles, social modes, range of intelligence, aggression, creativity, pitted against environmental factors, must have erupted in a mind capable of adaptive abstract thought, which we seemingly have control over, yet still directed by an instinctive hard wiring.
We survived, and our hominid competitors didn't. The competition between differing species of hominidae, close enough to require the same resources, but distant enough in structure to preclude cooperation, could have forced the hand of cerebral development until the winner, sapiens, emerged to take all.
Recalling Bateson's idea, the developmental land rush which populated the Earth with humans, and not something else, may have placed a new set of cortical structures on top of old ones with such speed that the older, Neanderthal grade thinking apparatus did not have time to become gradually subsumed under the control of higher structures, but had a capacity for high abstraction grafted onto it under the stresses of selection pressure.
This may explain the wondrous and infuriating double mindedness of humans. Our way in the world, our quirkiness, may be the eternal legacy of a genetic race to the finish line. The work of completing us may have been done in too much haste, not sufficient to have the wrinkles ironed out. The wrinkles have a way of making life interesting.
© 1995 Morgan Garwood
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