jump to navigation

On Human Nature September 19, 2015

Posted by Summerspeaker in Epistemology, Evo psych.
Tags: ,
trackback

Humans are biologically hardwired to breathe, drink, eat, piss, and shit. With absolutely no exception as far as I know, members of the species Homo sapiens have to take in nutrients and excrete waste. Beyond those universals human nature gets tricky. Surely human nature exists to some extent or another – humans have profound and fundamental differences from cats, etc. – but its contours and limits remain unclear. I’m always wary when I encounter anybody who invokes human nature, especially without citing unambiguous studies. Assuming exponentially increasing intelligence and all that, I imagine beings of some sort will eventually solve the question of human nature and really know what it means.

Until then, I advise caution.

Advertisements

Comments»

1. James Miller - September 19, 2015

Unfortunately, many public policy decisions require that we have some prior belief about human nature so we can’t just ignore the issue. If there is a 20% chance that people do X because of human nature, this probability often needs to be taken into account when considering whether the government should do something that impacts X.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: