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fquadri's picture


In Prof Grobstein’s group on Thursday, most of agreed that Dennett is trying to “stomp on” and get rid of skyhooks. Is this good or bad? I personally think it’s unnecessary for him to do such things. Usually skyhooks are not harmful. For example, one of the ultimate skyhooks and the example brought up in class was heaven and god. Science, mainly evolution, can be seen as a crane because it is supported by a “ground” of evidence. However some scientists, even evolutionary biologists, believe in God and the concept of heaven and hell; that does not get in the way of their empirical research. In this case, skyhooks are not causing any harm. In fact, skyhooks can be a driving force to construct more cranes. Some people may get into scientific work in order to discover the wonders of the world, and the wonders of god’s creations. In class, we discussed that the trip to the moon in the 1960’s would have been impossible if someone did not believe in the skyhook of traveling to the moon at first. I think skyhooks are essential to some degree. Without them, we lose our uniqueness as humans. One of the great things about us is that we have the ability to imagine and create stories, art, and all sorts of ideas with our skyhooks. To me, the concept of skyhooks evolved with humans. As our brains grew, so did their imaginations, and these imaginations created skyhooks.


As for comparing biological evolution with cultural and individual evolution, I think the comparisons between the two are limited. Biological evolution is undirected, random, and depended completely on environmental factors. Cultural and individual change is directed towards a better something, even perfection; it is not entirely random, there tends to be at least a vague plan. It may depend on the environment, but we’re at a stage now that we can influence the environment.


This may be a little late, but I found this video on about Darwin and Lincoln, watch away if you're interested:


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