Discussion of everything related to the Theory of Evolution.
It is a matter of figuring it out. You see that they live in similar size groups, the males are similarly a little larger than the females. There is a dominant male and a sub-dominant cohort or two. The omega males do not challenge threats but rally behind the dominants. The dominants consider the troop to be theirs and run it like it is. They pick up fallen infants and the females are happy to present to him. He does allow the other males to mate however. The male juveniles are kept from the center of the troop and are afraid of the alphas. The female juveniles are closely guarded but escape anyway sometime, to another troop, get pregnant and return. I could go on and on. These are behavioral factors that our religious systems ("cultures") mold and influence. From this one can build up (and I do) a whole picture. For example, the male hunting/war party, is so instinctive that we turn them into teams and they provide our sports. They even chase leather encased balls substituting for "game" in the game. We can find out from this why when monogamy was instituted some five thousand years ago in Sumer and Egypt, it transformed society. The rationing of women that way enabled each man to be the alpha in his hunting-gathering group substitute home. Etc.
This is just a taste of what we can piece together from all the ample material now available on the chimp. The profession is too hesistant. No one likes to step foreward and risk offense to the "creationists" by even inferring we are like "monkeys." People are so timorous because they are worried about tenure. And then, they rally in its defense because they are a chimp troop and want to be alphas defending it.
But it's all speculation, with virtually no fossil support, and since the main thrust of our split with chimplike ancestors was spurred by an adaptation to more open spaces and a much more migratory existence, the inference that we stayed chimplike in societal structure just doesn't seem to hold up. I'm all for guessing, but on the foundation available, that's pretty much what it is.
My guess would be for monogamy to be considerably older than human civilization, if only to support a hunting process that required a decent number of males invested in the group's welfare. But that's definitely just a guess, based upon some still-existing subsistence hunter-gatherer societies and the logic of group dynamics.
but it seems like you are saying that monogamy evolved in us. If that were the case, it would not be necessary for us to have monogamous religions to adapt us to monogamy. Also, there is about the same gender dimorphism with us as with the chimps. If we had evolved into an monogamous species, both males and females would be the same size.
Sociobiologists (the "meme theory") teach that some things such as altruism can be made more genetic by cultural influence (if I am not mistaken). But that does not happen. In almost 200,000 years here as our own species, we have had no significant biologicial or behavioral change that we know of. It is all cultural.
So, what I say is that it is RELIGIONS that are subject to natural selection. I say that their evolutionary function has been to bind us into societies larger than the hunting-gathering groups we evolve to live in, so they have to evolve in order that we can and have been able to live in larger and larger societies. Some societies are now some 2 billion people size. We are not evolved to feel secure and content in massive groups like that! Only a common world-view and way of thinking can enable us to even think of living in such over-crowded conditions.
It seems to me the most likely and direct way to determine our basic instinctive nature is to look at what we evolved from first! The chimp is evolved to live in groups about the size of the hunting/gathering groups we used to live in and which we evolved to live in. They are gender dimorphically about the same as we. They form Alpha male cabals, are not totally either monogamous or polygamas but inbetween like we. The list goes on and on. . .
How much of chimp behavior is "memetic"? Strange question . . . Behavior from one chimp group to another is insignificant. So, it would seem that "memetics" is insignificant. With us, however, the cultural differences are widespread and only made similar at all due to the spread of Secular Humanism.
So, we get insight into our un-culturally modified human nature not from studying "cultures" of people but from studying chimp behavior.
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