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Quo Vadis ? Where did you go ?
Perhaps this is a good point to summarize our information
Logical and with a degree of forward thinking
Long term proven survivor under difficult conditions
Brain size larger than Modern humans and certainly of other contemporaries
Socially highly developed
Courage in groups
Higher rate of reproduction
Given the above information explain how we would have the only example on the face of the planet for large brain within a species giving way to smaller. Some thing especially vexing to explain when the opponent is also physically less robust.
The most common attitude to the problem seems to be the Neanderthal was defeated in battle by Erectus or was unable to compete.
I would suggest that there may not have been a great deal of fighting. There appears to be no evidence of battles. There may however have been a degree of interbreeding. If my previous scenarios were correct then it is likely that Neanderthal would not have initiated aggression. If aggression did occur Neanderthals would have given a good account of themselves. They would have been highly likely however to have been greatly out numbered and outbred.
It is likely they found the irrational aspects of Erectus behaviour difficult to understand or to deal with.
If as I have suggested they were non aggressive then it is possible that they would have tended to loose. The unfortunate reality is that et cetera paribus ( all other things being equal) in a conflict situation that which strikes first and without warning wins.
I have suggested that Neanderthals were xenophils and would have not objected greatly to intermarriage or interbreeding. There have been academics who have suggested that interbreeding was not possible however the discovery of skeletons showing dual characteristics would indicate that it indeed took place.
The behaviour of modern humans under battle conditions is less than humanitarian rape is not uncommon and this
Of course it is possible that the changing climate put the Ice Giants under physical stress due to their better adaptation to cold. This is however not very convincing as one would have expected a migration to the colder north rather than has to the Iberian South as has been suggested as their last stand on the Mediterranean Coast. Further to this it is not as if the end of the ice ages was sudden. What appears to me to be logical and likely is that in hunting and gathering the strength and endurance of the Neanderthal would have been valued in any community.
As agriculture was introduced the strength would have been considered desirable. In frontier farms strength and ability to work have always been considered a family asset.
I am not convinced by arguments of lack of DNA evidence in the current population. Such arguments do not appear to be valid as in the case of Spain genetic evidence of the presence of the Moors rapidly disappeared. Furthermore the Neanderthal DNA was taken from only bone of a couple of individuals.
Indeed the DNA may only be one aspect of genetic evidence. There may be yet other markers which will prove to be significant.
Amongst other markers it may yet be that there is investigation needed in the area of the electromagnetic field associated with living things.
I believe that it is reasonable to suggest that the hard wiring of the brain is highly likely to be inherited. Such hard wiring will set propensities which will be developed or blocked through interaction with the environment. Some of this hard wiring may be part of the gift of Neanderthals to modern humans.
I would like to propose that evolution by its nature has been not only working towards physical adaptation but also toward increase in intelligence. By now it should appear to be clear that intelligence is not the sole province of humans. Indeed it has been suggested by Von Noyman and others that we may indeed be creating our own succession with the development of computers and machine intelligence.
I would suggest that the characteristics of the majority of the current human population are consistent with those I have described for Homo Erectus out of Africa and a very hostile environment. In this I am not seeking to be judgmental. I am not suggesting that one is better than the other. What I would however suggest is that one may be better fitted to survive under particular circumstances than the other. It would be my contention that it is best to have constructive co-existence between as many different groups as possible.
There are unlikely to be any today who would be "pure" in their origins there are those however who would be predominantly one or the other.
I would like to propose that there are in society two different forms of thought process being used. I would also suggest that the propensities these are hard wired in the brain though they can be modified. One of the aspects of this could be termed maze and pattern thinking
My students were drawn from a wide range of faculties and backgrounds, amongst them were fair number of librarians and intending librarians. It was interesting to dismantle a book in front of such a group. There was obvious dislike and even dismay amongst the majority of the group there was a different response from approximately 15%-20% of such groups. This response was "Is there a reason, and why are you doing this?
Observation indicated a difference between the custodians or maze thinkers and the pattern thinkers. Maze thinkers appeared to learn their mazes rapidly and appeared to hold them once learned. They seemed to like predictability and certainty. They would have difficulty if the maze were to change
The pattern thinkers tended to like change, often their solutions to problems were innovative. They had a tendency dislike the mazes to be bored with maze situations.
It is interesting to note that in the USA there was a study in which a group of people suffering from mental problems was divided into 3. One group was put with psychiatrists, the second group was left to their own devices. In both groups approximately one third got better. What was astonishing at the time was that the control group which were merely in a rural setting had twice the recovery rate. This I would believe might be an indicator that it is the pressure of the rate of change which causes problems for a large number of people.
Toffler's Book "Culture Shock" tends to be understood or empathized with by maze thinkers and the reverse is true of the pattern or Gestalten people.
What is of concern is that the control of society today operates too heavily under maze thinking. For example once it was accepted that the solution to crime was to put people in prison that was the maze solution. When it became clear that the prisons did not reform the majority of people, then rather than change the maze the term recidivism was coined and the maze remained the same. When it was shown that indeed the prisons were shown to be schools for improved crime still the prison and legal system have remained unchanged. When it has been shown that social minorities are over-represented in the prison population still the justice and prison system remain almost unchanged. Whilst it has been shown that it costs more to keep prisoners in jail than in elite hotels there has been little change other than moves to privatize. To tackle the root causes of the problem is far too radical.
What is terrifying in this context is that the maze solution to economic problems has been lets have a lovely war. When we have weapons of mass destruction that is sheer madness, it is also irrational.
HUP Human Potential Development Centre
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