Evolution, survival and adaptation (Evolution)

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Tuesday, February 20, 2018, 14:54 (295 days ago) @ dhw

We don't know how many have gone extinct, but it isn't the number I would argue about. What's worth arguing about is WHY they went extinct.

Let's categorize these into three groups: those that went extinct naturally, those that went extinct through natural cataclysm, and those that went extinct due to human activity.

The latter category we can scratch from this discussion entirely, because their extinction was enacted by an intelligent (and I use the word loosely) enemy. We may also scratch catastrophies, as they would bypass the 'evolutionary' mechanism.

That leaves the category of those that went extinct naturally, without unnatural excessive interference. This is generally the province of natural selection with it's survival of the fittest. If we examine each biological niche and role, we could likely determine a biological TODO list of events that must happen for the continuation of life. We would also likely find that those organisms which best fill that todo list are the ones that survive, much as happens to business when exposed to free market forces.

At any rate,the point was, what if we examine organisms through the lens of an ecological roles, and their efficacy at filling that role, instead of looking first at the individual organism.

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What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.


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