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Selfish genes and selfish meme

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Selfish genes and selfish meme


A question asked since the beginning of conscious thought or maybe even longer, a question that could only be answered by perhaps the dead, (with whom there is no scientific way of proving that they are even contactable yet). A question that it could also be argued is one that everybody at some stage has asked him or herself? This question however, is a question that many of us aren't even sure whether we actually want to know the answer to! But nevertheless, this is a question that is indeed important for many in deciding what kind of outlook towards life that they adopt. So, what is it that we all spend so much time thinking about................ IS THERE ANY EXISTENCE OF A SOUL WITHIN EACH OF US? The length of time, for which this question has been asked, is an indication that it is a question that will surely be debated for a great length of time to come. The beauty of it is in fact that although the answer is probably unattainable, humans shall never tire of talking about it and it is not a question that is solely limited to one single class, race or creed.

Although it is not the aim of this essay to answer the question, it is the intention to explore in depth the idea that humans may in fact not actually have a soul. By presenting the ideas that Richard Dawkins has illustrated in his book called ?The Selfish Gene?(1976), I shall attempt to do this. In so doing, this will hopefully not necessarily convince you that there is no such thing as a soul, but more so question your own existence as well as your own ideas revolving around life as you know it. You may in fact be thinking that you have your views and that is that. But to not be open to this paradigm shift is to limit oneself in such a way that the only conclusion to be reached is that one is simply not a freethinking individual but a product of society and its 'safe? and conservative ideals.

Some of the points brought up by Dawkins in his writings are ideas that are explored by scientific means and it is in this way that he actually provides extremely valid points to support his argument. Therefore it will be illustrated through this essay that it is in fact possible that we are creatures who have been created through a long and complex evolutionary process and nothing more. If this is the case, then how does one go about their everyday life knowing that the only real meaning to it is to survive? Wouldn't this concept if proven actually change the way in which people go about their everyday lives and cause people to seriously question their morals and ethics in light of the altered paradigm? If everything that we think, feel, and believe revolves around the simple fact that we do it for survival, and no other reason, then ones outlook would surely be seriously altered.

To question the roots of humankind, one must first question the beginning of life on Earth and to do this a scientific point of view must be taken. As Dawkins begins his writing, ?In the beginning was simplicity?, and from a scientific perspective, very few other outlooks can be adopted. As it is a fact that everything is made up of atoms and the universe is made up of stable things- rocks, galaxies, plants etc, it is logical to deduce that these stable things are in fact stable patterns of atoms. These stable patterns of atoms are formed because in certain conditions, certain configurations are more stable. This in effect is the cause for which many different elements have been formed by simply losing or gaining electrons and or protons, (the substances which atoms are made up of). Humans are made up of the same stuff that the rest of the planet is and as far as it has been documented the rest of the universe. Therefore, how could it be that we could be built with any extra parts to us that can not be explained in terms of stable things, stable atoms or stable elements? The general belief that some humans adopt is that there is the existence of a soul within each of us, but if this is so, the question must be put forward, why is there no existence of a soul in any other life forms? If indeed one does believe that there is the presence of a soul in other life forms, then does this include all life forms, from cockroaches to lizards to plants, or does it merely include life that only exhibits personality, or perhaps only animals? Where one draws the line is going to be at best a fuzzy place.

Nevertheless, as Dawkins points out, in the beginning there were only atoms and at best a few of them, these atoms, it could be said would have bonded into unstable and stable forms. The stable forms it could be said gave rise to the laws of natural selection and survival of the fittest in its most primitive form. At some point in time, these molecules that formed stable configurations were able to replicate and in so doing created ...

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Keywords: selfish genes and selfish memes, selfish genes and selfish memes summary, selfish gene examples, selfish gene explained, what does selfish gene mean, is being selfish genetic

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