Life is a highway

Saturday, January 14, 2012

A little love goes a long way.

It comes at no surprise to people that know me and have read my blogs that humans are not my favorite species on the planet. Therefore, this blog may come as a welcome surprise: humans are extraordinary (emphasis on 'extra - ordinary' as opposed to the meaning of magnificence... baby steps).

I do not like kids. I find them clingy and needy and overall a burden. Luckily for my potential future children I heard a very interesting fact recently that slightly supports their lack of independence in a positive way.
It has always annoyed me that human children are so dependent (to a point where they would die if left alone) for such a long time as compared to almost all other animals on this planet. Most babies stick around to learn just enough to survive and can often feed and take care of themselves shortly after their birth (chimps, however, are dependent for at least 5 years - which explains our roots); humans do not fall into this category. It has always boggled me how 'advanced' animals seem to be when getting a head start on life and starting off on their independent quests, a characteristic that I have always respected and wished upon human children, until now.

Did you know?
The longer a mammal is dependent on its mother for survival the greater its ability to enhance its likelihood for higher cognitive reasoning?

It is understood that the longer a child can go without having to struggle for survival the more advanced he/she will become, cognitively speaking. By allowing our children to remain dependent on us and protecting them from external threats we allow their minds to focus solely on development. Humans, and some other 'higher species', are the only creatures that have the ability to manipulate symbols using computational rules, to reason, and to have foresight, to name a few.

Because of this simple fact I have decide to let into my head, only slightly, the idea that humans are extra-ordinary. We have found a way, albeit not the most pleasant way, to increase our own intelligence and move ourselves up the food chain with some help from good-ole evolution and a little, or a lot, of patience. I would have to say that we deserve a pat on the back for that one.
I believe a thanks is in order. Next mothers day thank the woman who raised you for having the patience to feed you daily and put a roof over your head. Without her, you might have ended up as a sloth.

So next time your kid asks you for a cup of juice and you think "why can't this little life-suck get it himself already?!" just think, by getting him that cup you could be increasing your odds of being the mother of a future Einstein; who knows, they may share some of their Nobel Prize winnings.

That being said... there is a limit.

Further question:
Is this concept based on a person to person basis or is it based on evolution and every person right now is around the same area of cognitive ability?


  1. Very interesting article! It makes me wonder if animals who are raised by humans end up being smarter then they otherwise would have been growing up in the wild.

  2. Hmmm. Interesting idea. I would be curious to know. Does anyone have any insight on this?