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Why are we the only intelligent species?

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posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 12:05 PM
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Something I've been thinking about lately. Why is it that on this large, incredibly diverse planet, there only exists one species that has remarkable cognitive development? Why don't humans have any equals? Why is the "next best" species so far from us in terms of overall development?

I don't bring this up as a "creation vs. evolution" thing, that's not my intent and I find that context limiting. But dolphins and whales have similar abilities you could probably say, monkeys and apes, dogs and wolfs, ect. There are dozens upon dozens of similarly function animals, why don't we have any other equals on this planet? It just seems that we should have a multitude of other beings on this planet equal to us, but again, there isn't.

I guess you could look at the Neanderthals and say that we did have competition. But why was that evolutionary tree so successful? Is there a good explanation for why we are alone on this planet? There's also that idea of alien intervention, which I'm sure someone might bring up since they'll be more versed than me in that area.


How did our story of Earth unfold in such a way? Doesn't it seem just as possible, and maybe even more probable, that there would be others similar to us by going through the process of evolution?

I'm looking more at the idea of consciousness and the depth of that, rather than just "flat" intellect. We have such a monopoly no matter how you look at it. Where are the other societies?
edit on 25-2-2011 by Turq1 because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 12:09 PM
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reply to post by Turq1
 


If you check the honeycombs inside of Earth you may change how you think. I dont think humans are the only intelligent species on or within or part of Earth (considering the moon of course being the guest home!)



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 12:13 PM
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Elephants, and doplhins are 2 intelligent animals that are thought to be conciouss beings.

Dolphins know who they are...put either an elephant or dolphin in front of a mirror and see their reaction...they know its them they are looking at.




posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 12:13 PM
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I can't help myself here, got to post this...



We are not the same human beings we were just 100 years ago. We are moving back down the evolutionary chart.



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 12:17 PM
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depends wat you mean by intelligense ... dolphins are moore intelligent than humans... moore brains and using it better...

when it comes to understand good and bad... not sure wat we score... we kill for fun..and are in nature self destuctive and an danger for every living thing on earth...
I hate to be called intelligent then....
edit on 25-2-2011 by ressiv because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 12:30 PM
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I was just thinking the same idea earlier today. I've been reading this book which contains some of the most fascinating evidence for humankind having been around a LOT long than normally thought. Its called The Hidden History of the Human race (www.amazon.com...=sr_1_fkmr0_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1298657662&sr=1-2-fkmr0) - it's the very condensed version of Forbidden Archeology (www.amazon.com...). It's a great read, and I have learned a TON about ancient man and the commercialization of science. The book was criticized heavily when it came out by the type of scientist that the book itself criticizes. I am not an expert or even vaguely knowledgeable about ancient man in any scientific way, so I cannot comment on whether the book and its ideas are legitimate.

However, unless the authors are flat-out lying on almost every single bit of evidence they present, then it is one of the most amazing books I have ever read (up there with The Secret Life of Plants which is just *OMG* good).

Anyways, it seems foolish to assume that Homo sapiens v sapiens were the ONLY species to EVER on this planet develop any sort of technology or culture. Most scientists, it seems, agree that pre-anatomically-modern human varieties DID possess basic tool-making abilities and skills, but things like making a fire and cooking food, or agriculture were far beyond early man's capabilities.

Based on the discoveries outlined in that book and the seemingly endless reports of out-of-place-&-time artifacts from around the world, it seems logical that some time way back when, there was a race of bipedal human(oid)s which were quite intelligent. Whether those humanoids were us and we have existed far, far longer than currently thought, OR there was some other race.

This website hosts alleged interviews with a reptilian (not the overload type): www.luisprada.com...

This female reptilian claims to be a part of a race of reptiles which are native to Earth (meaning they evolved from dinosaurs as opposed to migrating to this planet from another star system) and mostly died out a few million years back, with survivors moving closer to the core of the planet. I can't remember the specifics but it is a really interesting interview. A great story even if it's BS. It's very different from most reptilian stories.

There's also the "sasquatch" race which are the "giants" that live in the honeycomb-like caves within the Earth's crust. Here's an interesting story about these giants and their interaction with the peoples of the Solomon Islands: web.archive.org...://www.thesolomongiants.com/

Again, all the stuff I have posted has in no way been confirmed except perhaps by other similarly unconfirmed stories.

As a kid, I always wondered if the dinosaurs were around for so long, wouldn't they have built some sort of house or city or something? Just like pretty much all animals on Earth today will find a place to live and build a nest or dig a hole or something. Maybe the dinos built giant dino cities which crumbled to dust after being deserted for millions of years...

One of my most beloved web-comics:







posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 12:31 PM
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We have opposable thumbs and written language,
but intelligence is something I often question.



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 12:52 PM
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I don't think humans are the only intelligent species , just the most intelligent species . Complex thought combined with equally complex action . While a chimp may display intelligence the same chimp will never figure out how to shift gears on a motorcycle or even why and i sure wouldn't want to be sitting in economy class when Captain Chimp comes on the intercom comes on and says that he's about to land the plane . Whales and dolphins are not only beautiful but also intelligent but that intelligence is highly limited . Without a conditioned reward such as half a fish for a positive behavior the dolphin isn't going to tail walk , jump through a hoop or count to 5 . They are all reward conditioned responces . They do vocalize which some may call a basic language with , according to some up to 200 individual vocalizations but it isn't quite language when an identical vocal expression is given under identical conditions . Several expressions given between mothers and calves , between males and females or to signal joy . Effective between members of that species but not complex , more insinctual and no indication of self awareness . They are to be loved and protected precisely because we are the most intelligent species who can formulate the complex plans and carry them out in order to do it . Whales never knew that they were being murdered to extinction but we did and we had the capability of doing something about it . Another species need not possess our intelligence for us to look upon them as valuable fellow travelers on the little blue marble . Huge mistakes can be made when assigning unfounded artificial value to anything . A case in point would be the Amazon rain forest . 4 decades ago we were told that it held all of the undiscovered medicine of the planet that can cure everything . This is the first year there is no biomedical research being done by anyone in the Amazon basin . Over half a million plant species chemically analyzed and 4 found having medical significence and nothing that we haven't found synthetically in the lab and can't easily be replicated . The indiginous people have nothing of advanced medical value and that's why they go to modern clinics for illnesses or conditions . Saving the rain forest should have been good enough and no propaganda required just like the creatures of the earth . We always want to assign value to make something worth it whether it's intelligence or something else that will be of direct benefit to us . If we can't talk to it , replicate it or eat it , shoot it . We have to change that . I'm not going to talk to it , replicate it or eat it but that little song bird chirping away while sitting on the fence is of extreme value and i'm not going to shoot it because it's a lower life form . It's life and that's the value . It need not have 200 different chirps for me to enjoy it's company and talk to it .



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 12:52 PM
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What about planets older than Earth that have life, would they be in a similar situation with one species being far more advanced than the others? There must be some conjecture by scientists one would think.
edit on 25-2-2011 by Turq1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 01:02 PM
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reply to post by Turq1
 


To answer, I'll just address the first bit you posted


Originally posted by Turq1
Something I've been thinking about lately. Why is it that on this large, incredibly diverse planet, there only exists one species that has remarkable cognitive development?


Because evolution tends to survival, not to intelligence. And we do have some species that are of remarkable, though less so than humans, cognitive development. Chimps, dolphins, and some species of octopus spring to mind immediately.




Why don't humans have any equals?


We did, they're dead. Homo neanderthalis comes to mind. Neanderthals were quite intelligent, though it seems less so than modern humans, and were incredibly strong. They didn't survive. It's not like there was just one species of human, there was just one that survived, most likely at the expense of the rest.

Evolution, she is a cruel and uncaring harlot.



Why is the "next best" species so far from us in terms of overall development?


Again, it's because intelligence isn't universally selected for. Why? Well, our big brains use up a lot of energy. We need to eat to keep that energy up. Some species, like sharks or cheetah, wouldn't benefit one bit from intelligence.

Hell, there's actually a marked difference between land mammals in terms of intelligence. Predators? Typically more intelligent than their prey.

Were intelligence a typically selected for factor, you might have a point, but it simply isn't. Also, we'd probably murder the hell out of anything that got close to us throughout our early evolutionary history.

Edit, I just reread your post, you did bring up Neanderthals. My bad. Point still stands, it's just that you had brought it up anyway. Also, the idea of alien intervention? Sort of hooey. No evidence for it at all.
edit on 25/2/11 by madnessinmysoul because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 01:06 PM
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reply to post by Turq1
 


I'd just like to point out that we're not more advanced than any other species. We're all equally advanced, we just happen to have intelligence.

We are less strong than a gorilla or many other species.
We have less keen eyesight than...well, a whole host of species there.
We're nowhere near as good as dogs at tracking scents, even amongst individuals who actually have a properly developed sense of smell.
We can't fly.
We're mediocre swimmers.
We have the longest developmental period of any animal in the animal kingdom.
etc.

We have our strengths, we have our weaknesses. Intelligence is just one hell of a useful strength, but it only becomes useful if you can survive long enough to use it.



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 01:20 PM
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Originally posted by JibbyJedi
I can't help myself here, got to post this...



We are not the same human beings we were just 100 years ago. We are moving back down the evolutionary chart.


I agree and disagree. We are definitely not the human beings we SHOULD be. The human race has always been divided by one thing, regardless of ethnicity, religion, etc, wealth has always been a great divider. The rich families are elevated above the poor, they hold the cards, they call the shots.

The mass population is now nothing more to them than a huge slave pool, The rewards we get for our efforts significantly pale into comparison with their gains. We are given enough to keep us from complaining, but not enough to actually be able to do something worthwhile with our free time. We are forced to work for them or starve because they make it impossible to earn your own living.

As a race, we are not merely dumbing down, we are splitting. There are 2 classes of humanity, the slave class and the master class. The master class in having the majority of the wealth, are able to become educated at the best establishments, devote time and effort into projects that can advance their branch of the human race, while dumbing down the slave class.

If there is another rival intelligent race on this planet, then they are more than likely behind the majority of our troubles. After all, look at nature, its not all pretty or pleasant. Just as we use animals for our purposes, maybe humans are being used by another race for their purposes. Or maybe we already wiped out our nearest rivals, which is the most likely story as humans cant even exist peacefully amongst themselves.

Nature is one screwed up beast.



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 01:53 PM
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Agree about the rich and the poor. Also consider the differences between races- ex. Asians, Africans, Arabians, Americans..... We all look different but we have the same brain power. It all depends on what you are born with. Also, I do think we were genetically engineered because our evolution is way too fast compared to other species.



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 01:53 PM
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Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
reply to post by Turq1
 


I'd just like to point out that we're not more advanced than any other species. We're all equally advanced, we just happen to have intelligence.

We are less strong than a gorilla or many other species.
We have less keen eyesight than...well, a whole host of species there.
We're nowhere near as good as dogs at tracking scents, even amongst individuals who actually have a properly developed sense of smell.
We can't fly.
We're mediocre swimmers.
We have the longest developmental period of any animal in the animal kingdom.
etc.

We have our strengths, we have our weaknesses. Intelligence is just one hell of a useful strength, but it only becomes useful if you can survive long enough to use it.


But we have the capacity to modify our environment in order to more than compensate for every one of those weaknesses - that's what sets us apart. (robotics, binoculars, airplanes, submarines, etc). Of course, that ability just might be what wipes us out, too, but that's a different story...



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 01:58 PM
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Originally posted by JibbyJedi
I can't help myself here, got to post this...



We are not the same human beings we were just 100 years ago. We are moving back down the evolutionary chart.

That's the hardest to read things I have read on this forum lately...
Guess no HUMAN notices it RIGHT?!
...



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 02:03 PM
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reply to post by leaualorin
 


AHH the chimp is doing better with the masked numbers then the human WEREDADODATAT...

edit on 2/25/11 by Ophiuchus 13 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 03:30 PM
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Oh come on, a monkey that has been trained to do one thing, and excels at it (shockingly), is supposed to be an example of how monkeys are close to us as far overall achievement? Do you know what the monkey's motivation is? A cookie. That's intelligence right there. What makes us human isn't about performing well in a niche game...

As far as why there aren't other advanced species like our own, I think is an interesting question. If life began all at the same time with a single organism, and evolved from there, why is there only one species that has the ability to do all that we can. As someone mentioned, it seems we've evolved faster.

Let's say we have a sterile planet in some distant galaxy. We throw a pile of garbage there full of bacteria, come back however millions of years later....wouldn't it be assumed by science that there would be a more balanced distribution of intelligence/achievement between the species at the top?
edit on 25-2-2011 by Turq1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 04:02 PM
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Intelligence is just one feature of a body. Over the course of evolutionary history, concealed ovulation and echolocation are just as "unique." The mating system of a spoon-worm is unique to a spoon-worm (the female snorts the male up its nose where the male crawls inside to the reproductive tract and deposits sperm) and has just as much survival value as intelligence. Insert any organism ad infinitum

And remember, at one time there were more than one group of simian primates that were intelligent, but just solely by the nature of evolution and genetic change, one species perpetuates, with some recombinant genetic components of the others. So the question should be, why are bipedal primates the only one with the ability to use their intelligence to manipulate their environment and reflect and ways of advancing their way of being? Its really has a lot to do with the right combination of features. Neoteny, bipedalism, opposable thumbs, the larynx, straightened back, concealed ovulation, densely populated communities, among many other aspects not mentioned, all play a role.

The evidence for acute consciousness (human-like) in aquatic mammals, elephants, and perhaps horse, is prevalent enough to merit further consideration.
edit on 25-2-2011 by uva3021 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 25 2011 @ 08:47 PM
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My cat set me an I.Q. test,

and I failed.



posted on Feb, 27 2011 @ 08:41 AM
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reply to post by Turq1
 

There is every chance that there have also been species in the past with cognitive abilities comparable to modern humans. The dinosaurs had 170 million years to evolve them.

Are 'Aliens' Dinosaurs & Survivors of an Earthly Cataclysm Returning Home?



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