Selfishness, Cooperation, Altruism

Manuel de la Herrán Gascón

En obras
Index: there is something that sound wrong

The evolution such as us the present the darwinismo or the Computation Evolutionary puede to seem to simple sight a process descarnado, egotistic and cruel. For some, the Genetic Algorithms they are the confirmation math of it unavoidable of the selfishness in the world. Other express its objection before this conception of the relationships between individual, and confían intuitivamente in the victory of the cooperation. Other, between the that me incluyo, we arrive to the same conclusion to traves of the observation of the world real and of the simulations for ordering. As described Teilhard of Chardin, to large features, the cooperation only puede to increase.

¿Has actually the altruism a place in the evolution humanizes or chance is that it that we want to believe? ¿We can to investigate this with a ordering? We go to to analyze various theories alternative or complementary that explain the evolution of the beings live, and within of they we go to to see the paper that has or puede to have the cooperation, relating it all with the Computation Evolutionary and the Artificial Life. This exposition it is base fundamentally in the authors: Teilhard of Chardin, Pedro Kropotkin, Fred Hoyle, José Antonio Jáuregui and Richard Dawkins.

Before of to continue i want to clarify that in this document not it is discuss the ethical of these behaviors, but that it is analyze for what some or a combination of they they are seleccionados in the evolution. For to know which they are the seleccionados, enough with to watch to our around, already that we and the rest of the beings live we are product of she. Yet thus not we should to forget that the process evolutionary is something dynamical. Today it is selecciona a thing, tomorrow other, and in a moment anyone live together strategies adapted with other destined to to disappear. The man will follow evolucionando, not we know toward where. Such time it will be it sufficiently different as for to give a draft radical to the process, such time not. Without embargo, we have some tracks: the evolution selecciona those characteristic that provide to the individual a greater probability of to have falling capable to its time of to have more falling and thus sucesivamente. If qualities as the sight, the smell, the agility, the size, the force, the possession of fangs, the aspect colorful or the capacity of it be fed of diets very assorted they have been seleccionadas until now, in it that concern to the human, the criteria seem that they are and go to be very different.

¿They are the that more money have the that more descendents let? Though exist a relationship, there is other factors: the attractive sexual in the human seem yet much more important that in the animal, the intelligence seem also fundamental, but would be as the size. In principle always seem better be more large that the other. But puede have a limit, as seem that occurred with the dinosaurios and the meteorites. In change some defect physical not is important, always that it is could to remedy with some eyewear, or a simple operation, but in the rest of the animal always it there is been. The cesárea prevents the existence of a selection in function of several problems in the pregnancy, for it that in the future puede be unavoidable that all the children born thus, on all if the hips better formed from the point of sight reproductive let of be the of greater attractive sexual, thing that to the less for the moment not seem have occurred. In how much to the behaviors, is evident that the cooperation (with interest for both parts) is the more useful and the largely seleccionado, it being found alone some cases of i complete selfishness (as occur in the babies, though the example such time not it will be valid for not to belong actually to a environment social) and of i complete Altruism (martyrs, missionaries, cooperantes, etc).

If we believe that in the evolution "all tend to to go always to better", then we will have to to accept that our criteria of "it that is better" not they are always the same that the of the nature. If we accept that the evolution not has a address determined, we will have to to admit that in many cases it seleccionado correspond with it that we we call "better". The criterion of the nature is simple, but provide few information to the problem: it is selecciona it that survive, is to say, survive it that survive... though sound absurd. It that occur with this misses affirmation is that not preach it that is going to to survive. Not it we know. Simplemete we are defining the basis of the evolution... and result that us we find with something so fundamental as the space, the time, the matter and the energy; as the principle of identity To=To or as the modus put cause-effect.

[ Back to Index ]

A little of History

The Genetic Algorithms bases its operation in the principle of the Selection of the Kinds, it that today we know for Darwinismo. The Darwinismo has its origin in the projects of Alfred Russel Wallace on the trend of the varieties of beings live to it be separated of the type originating, and for supposed, also in the projects of You chat Darwin. It is believes that the written of Wallace they were read for Darwin creating a strong impact and interest in he, and it is speech of the lack of propriety that supposed the reading of the projects of Wallace in last place during the first meeting of the Society Linneana, the 1 of july of 1858, after of the reading of several resúmenes of Darwin, yet habiéndose agreed it opposite.

In any case, Darwin it is put to to work of immediate in its famous book "The origin of the Kinds", that appeared in 1859. Previously to this, other important contributions they were the theory of Jean-Baptiste of Lamarck and the studies of Geology of You chat Lyell (bases in James Hutton), where it is offer a explanation of how the selection natural puede to print variations injurious in a kind, and in the which it is believes that it is base the work subsequent of Edward Blyth on the existence of a structure genetic characteristic in all form living.

Lamarck it was the first in to formulate a theory of the evolution with coherence logic, according to the which exist transmission of the characters acquired of parents to children. This theory today it is consider wrong; though some authors, as Donald Michie, in the article "The third phase of the genetic" suggest and present examples that indicate that the plasma germinal it must to possess some vulnerability front to the influences originating of the body that it harbor.

Well, until now there is ghost quite people, but still there is more. The darwinismo it is also very influenced for the work of the economist english Thomas Robert Malthus, author of "Trial on the principle of the population" where exposed its doctrines on the growth of the population. Given the increased rate (geometric) of reproduction of all the beings organic, its number tend to to grow to pace exponencial, and given that the foods, space physical, etc. not it make in the same proportion (grow of form arithmetic or linear), and while this occur, will born many more individual of the that is possible that survive, and in consequence, as it will be that generally it is appeal to the struggle for the existence, already it will be with individual of the same kind or of kinds different, or simply with the environment, attempting to modify its characteristic adverse, it is detach that a individual, if acts of a manner profitable for he, will will have a greater probability of to survive, and it will be seleccionado naturally. In summary, that survive the more strong.

[ Back to Index ]


The theory of the selection of the kinds support that those individual of a population that possess the characters more advantageous will let proportionally more descendents in the following generation; and if such characters it is they should to differences genetic, that they can it be transmitted to the falling, will tend to to change the composition genetic of the population, increasing the number of individual with said characteristic. Of this form, the population completes of beings live it is adapt to the circumstances variable of its environment. The result final is that the beings live tend to perfecciónarse in relationship with the circumstances that the implicate. In conclusion: the population change (evolution) toward the figure of the more strong.

Nobody puts in doubt the fact of that the kinds evoluciónan (change). Without embargo, exist a discussion about of how it make, why it make, and toward where it is direct the evolution. The answers to these questions not let indifferent to the philosopher; either to the programmer of Genetic Algorithms.

The theory of the selection of the kinds argue that the evolution of the beings live in the nature, (of the which we we are fruit), it is produces thanks to the competition and the struggle between the individual. This is the "how"; apparently the same argument illustrate the why (more forward it is offer other vision). The beings live evoluciónan because not they can let of to make it: the beings live they can to have or not this attitude of competition, such time they could to decide if to participate or not in these struggles against other, but in any case the that not fight will die or it is will reproduce in smaller degree, for it that a behavior peaceful will tend to to disappear. In how much to the life, the explanation more simple is that it is created to the random and that its objective is to obtain individual each time more perfect and powerful.

Darwin even attempt to prove that the evolution is the divine decision of the nature, and attempt to justify it that to the eyes of the man seem ethically incomprehensible; in words of Darwin "[...] when we muse on the struggle, we can to console us with the belief of that the war of the nature not is continuous, that not it is sit fear, that the death is generally rapid and that the vigorous, the sound and the happy they are the that survive and it is multiply".

[ Back to Index ]

Darwinismo Social

The conclusions that it is they can to extract of this for its application in the life real seem very dangerous if it is apply to the be human (¡On all if our premises result be untruthful!); today in day constitute a argument fundamental for to defend the competitiveness own of the world western. To this it is to him there is call Darwinismo Social, that today in day it is carry to the practical in great part of a form purportedly civilized to slant of decisions political or commercial, as blockades economic, in time of with teeth and claws such as make the animal. Currently each time it is use less these arguments for to justify attitudes physical and directly violent, though yes exist sad examples of you slaughter and fanaticisms racial in the present. Without embargo, yes it is it is using in great measure for to defend political economic and commercial of countries or companies, and even these arguments they are used in conflicts to level personal, appealing to supposed laws of the nature with phrases as "is law of life" that not they are more that a form deceit of the same struggle for the survival, without teeth neither claws but equal of fatal, or the "to kill or to die", all this in line with the concept of superhombre own of Nietzsche.

[ Back to Index ]

Critical to the Darwinismo Social

¿Is this truth? ¿Is certain that the man there is evoluciónado to to depart of the violence? ¿Is certain that only puede to follow evolucionando of that way? ¿Would let of evolucionar the animal if they would be peaceful? There is that to clarify that Darwin little has that to see with the darwinismo social, and that i have shown a vision of the darwinismo intencionadamente extreme (Wallace and Darwin me forgive).

Initially, we can descartar the answers extremas. Neither the i complete selfishness neither the i complete altruism offer good results to the individual. Between the various behaviors human, exist one very interesting in the that it is combine a desire of behavior altruistic unido to a activity egotistic. ¿Puede to exist a origin evolutionary to the need of to justify us?

The critical to this interpretation not it is make to wait. It is argue that the Darwinismo applied without more to the Man is a interpretation wrong and party, that probably not it would be defended for Wallace neither for Darwin, and that not exist in the life real. In first place, the darwinismo pure require a shortage large, a lack of resources such that compel to the individual to to compete. For this presuppose that the population grow of form exponencial and the foods of form linear, it that not is or not has for what be thus in the case of the Man, already that for a part exist the control voluntary of the birthrate (even animal as the kangaroo they are capable of to control its reproduction and let of it be multiplied when the conditions of the middle ambient they are adverse) , and for other the revolution industrial, the revolution data processing and the settling of the space, that permit that the foods continue the pace of growth of the population. The Darwinismo Social presuppose also that the more strong and preparations they are the that more it is reproduce, and this is a norm much more customary in the animal that in the be human. In definitive, it is assert that the darwinismo explain the evolution of plants and animal until to arrive to the man, but not puede to explain the recent neither the future evolution of this. For this many authors suggest that the evolution such as the we know it is stopped, according to some, with the discovery of the fire, according to other, with the first controls of birthrate voluntary, and that to to depart of that moment the man there is evoluciónado and evoluciónará of other form, such time of form conscious (engineering -manipulation- genetic), such time with other mechanism that not it will be the genetic.

From the point of sight of the programmer of Genetic Algorithms, the lack of variety is a inconvenient. In a Algorithm Genetic it is seleccionan the entities that better solve the problem, but also it is seleccionan other with worse results whose composition is different to the of the winning. If not it is made this, the algorithm it is would stem in a population of the type of the winning, that it is would reproduce some with other without to generate more variety that the that provide the mutations, of form that for a part, not it will be possible to solve a problem changing (or would be very unlikely), and for other, if exist other solutions better that the found, not it is would to arrive to they. All the algorithms genetic that "operate" (except the that solve problems extremely simple) implement some form of selection that permit the variety, of form that it is avoid in it possible that the algorithm it is reservoir in a máxmimo local (¡Though in definitive all the algorithms finish late or early stagnant in a maximum local, already that if not not would obtain never no result!).

Teilhard of Chardin offer a vision esperanzadora, positive and pacificadora of the evolution, seeing in she successive stages of destruction (death, without the sense negative that customarily it is attribute to this word) and construction of something better on it destroyed (life) that produce increases of complexity and of conscience, being the be human compound initially for a component corporal or somático (animal) to the that the evolution there is aggregate it cerebral, intellectual and psychological (rational), and that it is find evolucionando toward and acquiring the third component teónico or noosférico (spiritual), and who knows that other components in the future.

[ Back to Index ]

The support mútuo

Pedro Kropotkin, in its book "The support mutual" (Issues Mother Terra, 1970) emphasize the importance that there is been able to have the cooperation in the evolution, without to deny the component evolutionary in the form darwinista.

Herbert Spencer, who, before of Darwin there is drawn already a plan of a vast system of philosophy synthetic, extended the idea of the evolution for a part to the matter inorganic, and for other, to the society and to the culture. For he, the struggle for the life (struggle for life) and the "survival of the more able" (expression that was using from 1852), represent not only the mechanism for the which the life it is transform and evolution, but also the only route of all progress human. Sit thus the bases of it that it is will call the Darwinismo Social, with influences subsequent in the capitalism ferocious manchesteriano and the racism. Thomas H. Huxley, disciple staunch of Darwin, publish, in february of 1888, in the magazine The Nineteenth Century a article that, as its name indicate, is all a manifesto of the Darwinismo Social: The Struggle for Life: To Programme. Kropotkin remain touched for this work, where sees exposed the ideas social against the that always there is fought founded in the theories scientific to the that was considering as culmination of the thought biological contemporary. Reaction, and intend to refute it with a series of articles that go appearing in The Nineteenth Century and that but late it is would convert in the book "The support mutual. A factor of evolution".

Kropotkin emphasize that the supposed "tireless struggle bloody" for the resources not is so frequent as Darwin us makes to imagine, existing other tantísimos examples of collaboration between the individual grouped in herds, families etc. Kropotkin observe that in the animal not is so much the struggle for the survival of some against other as the struggle for the survival against a environment adverse, for example, in the case of some fowl that in winter and before the shortage of foods decide to migrate in group to other lands, in place of to fight between they for a scarce food.

For that exist evolution is necessary a selection (of the better), and for that exist said selection, the resources they should be scarce, not infinite. Kropotkin it is de acuerdo with this; is more, Kropotkin it is thoroughly de acuerdo with the darwinismo. But add a nuance. It must to remain clear that it is speech of the support mutual as a factor of evolution, not the only neither the more important.

Already that some individual they will be seleccionados and other not, this simple fact it is puede to express as "the individual compete" (for be seleccionados). The metaphor is valid, but puede it be misinterpreted, because puede it be supposed more of it that it is says.

Veámolos with a example: if we want to make a salad of tomatos, we can to go to a shop and to buy them. We will attempt to catch the better tomatos: we can to say that the tomatos in the shop "compete for be seleccionados". The metaphor puede be valid, but the tomatos not it is move, not fight between they, and not it is deprive resources. If we think in the tomatos in the land in its phase of growth, the metaphor is much more succeeded. The key now it is in which is the criterion for seleccionar tomatos: ¿it is is going to seleccionar a number fixed? ¿It is go to seleccionar those that fulfil certain carácteristicas, they will be how much they will be? ¿A combination of both factors? (To the students this you will recall to the two forms of to determine the approved and the discontinued: through a test individual or through the hated "bell of Gauss").

We happen now to the case general of the nature: Kropotkin argue that the limits to the multiplication excessive they are much more frequently the obstacles natural, and not the rest of the individual.

The conclusion that it is obtain of here is that the cooperation it is gives but strongly in situations of adversity, and the competition in the case of to inhabit in a environment benevolent. They are two expensive of a same currency: a environment "wicked" generate kindness, and a environment "good" generate wickedness ¿It is will tend for so much to a distribution determinadade "good" and "wicked"? ¿Or to some individual with certain probability of it be shown as "good" or as "wicked"?.

Such as report Kropotkin, in the nature the animal live for it general in environments of great adversity, and for so much the better option is the collaboration and not the competition. Dawkins indicate (pag. 147) that "the animal wild almost never die for age advanced. The hunger, the diseases or it predadores finish with they much before of that it is become actually senile. Until makes little this was also applicable to the man. The majority of the animal die in the childhood, and many of they not arrive to to surpass the stage embryonic." Seem be that the great majority of the beings live die of hunger, or to cause of changes of temperature, in many cases little time after of to born, in a struggle against the environment, but not against other of its same kind. If us we fix in the number of sucklings that born for year of a kind, is evident that the majority of they not survive many years.

Los antropólogos citan como pueblos que nunca han hecho la guerra a los habitantes de las islas Andamán, cerca de la India; los shoshoni de Nevada; los yahgan de Patagonia; los indios mission de California; los semai de Malasia y los tasaday de Filipinas. Ejemplos de pueblos que se encuentren casi constantemente en guerra son mucho más fáciles de encontrar.

For Kropotkin the shortage of population animal is the situation normal in the planet, and the number of animal existing in a area determined not depend of the capacity maximum of supply, but precisely of it that is capable of to offer in the conditions less favorable, in the summers dry when all the weed it is burn.

For Kropotkin the state is a entity that prejudice the development of the support mutual. To the to absorb the state the functions social, it is increase the duties of the citizen toward the state (taxes) in decline of the duties toward the rest of citizen. The the guilda of the Age Mean, two "brothers" they had to to care for shifts to the brother sick. With the state, enough with to give to the companion the address of the hospital public more next. In the society "bárbara" to attend a fight between two persons for motives personal and not it be concerned of that not i had consequences deadly would mean to attract toward one same the accusation of homicide, but de acuerdo with the state that all it monitor, the that presence a fight not has need of to intervene, post that for that it is the policeman. When between the wild -for example, the hotenontes- it is consicerraría inconvenient it be put to to eat if have fact to yells for three times a invitation to who could it be joined to the banquet, between we the citizen respectable it is limit to to pay a tax for the poor.

Though objectively and to i cut term the result obtained it will be similar, such time in some cases better and in other worse, in definitive it is obtain that the citizen center all its attention in its happiness individual, without to lend attention to the needs foreign.

In some insects as the ants comprobamos that there is evolucionado the strategy contraria. The feromonas they are hormonas capable of to leave of the body, of regulation for the air and of penetrar in other body. When a ant experience a sensation, the emite for all its body and all the ants of the alrededores the perciben to the same time that she. A ant estresada comunica to the instant its penalty to the environment, of luck that this alone has a preocupación: that cese the penoso message encontrando a method for to help to the individual.

[ Back to Index ]


For Fernando Savater, aspects ethical as the respect toward the other they are attitudes whose origin is in last instance the search intelligent of the benefit own. The simulations for ordering seem to give to him the reason. In games as The dilemma of the prisoner, it is observe that the altruism is prejudicial for the that lives together with individual egotistic, but the selfishness need to who to exploit to long term, for it that both they are strategies destined to to disappear. They are the agreements own of the cooperation the that offer the better results.

In concrete, experimentalmente it is prove that in the game iterado of the prisoner, the better strategy is the of the "where the give the take" or "rencoroso", that beginning co-operating and after will make it that its opponent there is accomplished in the movement previous: if co-operated, will co-operate of new, and if to him betrayed, to him will betray, it that suppose a cooperation conditional (i co-operate if your also it you make) having also good or better results other varying with more or less "report" of the past ("i co-operate if your also it you have fact to the less the last five times"). In the program of "Ants and plants" of "Ejemplos de Vida" it is observe the advantage that suppose the cooperation own of the ants green. Without embargo the critical to the Darwinismo Social they are to its time criticized for guíarse more for the desires that for the logic, saying that they are the result of many and noble good intentions but lack of realism, it being maintained a warm polemics on the topic.

The ethical and the laws they could be in reality demonstrations of these agreements of cooperation that the evolution selecciona as útiles for our own survival. In any case, the ethical and the laws they are sujetas to evolution as if of beings live it is tratase. Survive and it is reproduce those procedures éticas or laws better adapatadas to the environment where it is develop, and that environment we are we same. The fact of that the laws and éticas are sujetas to evolution not wants to say that they will be justas. A norm ethical neither even has that be related with something that it be "well". The why of this it is related with the fact of that the phrase with the that beginning this párrafo, to weigh of be certain, not is completes. Also we can to say that "The ethical and the laws they could be in reality demonstrations of agreements of cooperation that the evolution selecciona as útiles for the own survival of those same éticas and the laws".

The voice of the conscience that atormenta to the adult rare time is originada for intercambios commercial beneficiosos for one same and prejudicial for the other. Few persons it is lamentan for have vendido something to a price greater of the that actually is worths. More well to the opposite. But many suffer a joint of tabús sexual puritanos inculcados in the childhood, morbos originados for the disease spiritual of the educating, that individually in nothing benefician to who the possess, though to him permit a aceptación social that in certain cases puede be imprescindible. As a catarro or a gripe, the mojigatería it is transmit of some to other, prejudicing to the individual but without to arrive to its destruction. Erich Fromm, (p. 103 and 108, adapted)

[ Back to Index ]

Critical Global to the Darwinismo

José Antonio Jáuregui, in "The ordering cerebral" also criticize the darwinismo (Notes, point 7, pag.244) though of form very different to the that until now it is they have described, observing that who believe in the evolution as a ascension continuous and ininterrumpida of beings until the man sin of antropocentrismo; the theory of darwin "us let colds to the wolves and to the frogs".

Exist other critical to the darwinismo yet more radical, is to say, persons that criticize the own bases of the darwinismo, not already applied to the man, but to bacteria, animal or plants. Much people it is astonish of that it is could to criticize the darwinismo. Also it is missed much who listened for first time the affirmation of that the land is round, when the logic you was saying without place to doubts that was flat. This tend to happen with the ideas that explain the reality of a form simple and easy of to understand. For supposed that the explanations simple also they can be real; it that i want to say with this is that when it is read a critical of a idea simple and logic and accepted for all, is necessary to acquire before a mentality very opened, or not it is it will be able to obtain no profit of she.

Fred Hoyle, in its book "The universe intelligent" (Ed. Grijalbo, 1983) puts in doubt a evolution base in mutations and reproduction sexual. According to this author, "The origin of the Kinds" offer a great joint of details empirical (great part of they, extracted of the observations effected for Darwin in the period 1831-1836 to board of the Beagle) that it is present as a demonstration of the theory darwiniana of the selection natural, when not they are more that tests of the existence of the evolution, but not of its cause. Is to say, that though the selection natural puede to produce evolution, not it is so clear that the evolution such as we the we know and in our planet it is there is produced had to to this factor, is possible that the cause it will be other or that exist other reasons additions.

For a part Fred Hoyle observe that the records fossil not show a transformation gradual of the kinds as it is would to wait of a vision darwinista, but sharp jumps. For other, analyze the requirements for the creation of a new characteristic in a population:

- appear a mutation in the reproduction
- the mutation produces a advantage to the individual
- the individual is capable of take advantage said advantage and to have a greater descendents had to to this
- the mutation it is transmit to the descendents

These steps conllevan too inconvenient: the majority of the mutations not they are advantageous; yet when it they are, the individual puede to die accidentally or not to have a great descendents for any other reason; in the case of to have it, is possible that the mutation not it is transmit or yet it being transmitted, not it is obtains the effect waited to the to lack other components genetic.

All this it understand perfectly the programmer of Genetic Algorithms. The Genetic Algorithms operate very well in problems simple, and seem logical that the evolution it is there is produced thanks to a mechanism similar. In a Algorithm Genetic it is choose the better solutions, for that to the it be reproduced, generate other new that combine the aspects positive of each progenitor. Without embargo, in many problems occur that in the combination of solutions not only not it is maintain the qualities positive of the progenitors, but that furthermore it is generate with frequency solutions not valid, whose approximation to the objective sought is void. To this it is to him there is call the "problem of the deception", "epístasis" or "absence of blocks constructing". Though the gene mutado it is transmit, is possible that it is needed of other mutations for that the result it will be beneficial. ¿Of that serve wings with pens if not puede to breathe the air? ¿How they have been able it be generated gradually organs complex, as the eyes or the pens for the flight, that not they can to depend of a only mutation, if only the organ i complete is useful to the individual?

Hoyle find a response to these questions. The eyes of the vertebrados, the of the molluscan cefalópodos, and the of the insects they have evoluciónado of form quite independent; without embargo all they focus the light on a substance call retinol. Relating this type of examples with the properties of tiny meteorites that customarily fall in the Land, Hoyle establish a passionate and coherent theory in the that it is propose a bombardment of material genetico originating of the foreign as cause of the apparent jumps of complexity evolutionary.

"The virus of the descolada fué created. Someone it manufactured and sent, maybe for terraformar other planets preparing a attempt of settling. Whoever that it would be would be still there it would be [...]", in Children of The mind, of Orson Scott Card (Saga of Ender)

[ Back to Index ]

Richard Dawkins

Richard Dawkins offer a of the more interesting but worse comprendidas contributions to the topic of the cooperation and the competition between individual.

In the human it is find behaviors very different, all type of selfishnesses and altruisms. From certain point of sight, it is puede to argue that when a individual co-operate, is because selfishly, there is evaluated that this to him it help to to obtain its objective, and for so much only exist the selfishness. This apparent paradox not is but that a sterile confusion of terms, that carry to to deny a difference that yes exist. For to draw some usefulness of the issue is advisable not to have in account motivations, but only acts.

"The immense majority of the actions, yet the of the persons more noble, have motives egotistic, and not there is that lamentarse for this, since if it would be of other manner, the reason humanizes not would to survive. A man that it is preocupara of that comieran the other olvidándose of to eat he same, would die." Erich Fromm, (p. 120)

A behavior altruistic it will be that that contribute to the welfare foreign to expenses of the own; one egotistic would be exactly it opposite. I go to to call cooperation to the different forms of agreement that it is find oscillating in the limit between altruism and selfishness.

In its book "The gene egotistic" appear three personages principal:

  • The gene egotistic
  • The "bundle" of the gene egotistic: the be live (animal, plant).
  • The memes (cultures, ideas, languages,...).

    We go to to define first that is gene egotistic, already that the term has for Dawkins a meaning quite different to the customary, already of for if ambiguous.

    The term gene puede it be referred to the unit minimal that it is recombina and inherit, to the unit minimal that it is muta, or to the unit minimal that fulfil a function in the development of a new be live.

    Dawkins not it is refer exactly to no of these definitions. In all the cells of our body exist the same information genetic: a releases chain of ADN identical in the interior of each cell. For Dawkins, "the gene egotistic not is only a portion physical of ADN: is all the replies of a portion of ADN, distributed for the world". Is to say, the same alelo or value in the same positions within of the chain of ADN, is the same gene egotistic, already it is find in one or in different individual. A gene egotistic of the that speech Dawkins not only it is simultaneously in all the cells of our body. It is simultaneously in several individual.

    This abstraction of Dawkins serves for to express the following idea: the genes have the objective of it be reproduced to yes same, to coast of it that it will be, but not to coast of other segment of ADN identical, already that both they are the same gene.

    Dawkins speech mainly of genes egotistic, not of bundles egotistic. Though the idea of bundle (be live) egotistic appear of form secondary, the arguments of Dawkins it is bases in the selfishness of the genes, not of the bundles.

    Dawkins flame to the genes egoistas because for they is unavoidable to attempt it be reproduced to all coast, to coast of any other thing that find to its step, but not to coast of other segment of ADN identical, already that both they are the same gene. This concept of selfishness not has much that to see with it that it is understand colloquially.

    According to this vision we are machines of survival built for our genes for its own perpetuación. We come of the genes egotistic, molecules autorreplicantes that in certain moment "decided" that the creation of a machine as we, with a capacity of reasoning flexible, was it more adapted for its end. There is idealistic that reject impulsively the idea of a nature base in genes egotistic and there is who only see in she selfishness and destruction. If well is certain that too times the nature not is "mother", it would be of our optical, the nature is simply indifferent. In any case, Dawkins speech of genes egotistic, not of individual egotistic. And it that is more important: with the theory of Dawkins, the cooperation and even the altruism (real) between individual they can be explained for the "selfishness" (metaphorical) of the genes.

    From certain point of sight, the reproduction is comparable to the growth. We can to say that the cells of our body co-operate, and even that it is behave of form altruistic, already that not attempt it be reproduced to coast of its neighboring, but that produce a growth ordered, forming a body, such as agree to the genes egotistic. To level of individual, when a individual co-operate with other and both share genes (and two members of the same kind tend to share more of the 90% of they), we can to say that in reality it that occur is that the genes egotistic it is they are helping to yes same. When two individual of the same kind compete, it make for to propagate its 10% differential. Is logical that if two individual share the same niche (for example, for be of the same kind), will exist a greater competition between they. But in general, eliminating other factors, a individual will will have a greater trend to to co-operate with other (being able to to choose between several individual), that it will be proportional to the number of genes in that coincide. For this not makes lack a laboratory, enough with to observe seemed physical. The support mutual between the individual is, in fact, a factor of evolution, but puede be seen to the light of a selfishness of the genes.

    The theory of the gene egotistic try of trends: the genes egotistic try of it be reproduced; this not wants to say that always it procure. Already that the theory of the gene egotistic try of trends, the fact of that a trend determined not it is observe in the nature not enough for to put in doubt said theory. A reason is that would to exist other trend opposed more strong whose existence could be also justified according to the theory of the gene esgoísta.

    For example, two beings of the same kind carry great quantity of genes equal. The genes program its machines of survival of form that it is assure the survival of the genes, not of the machines. For a gene is indifferent be in a machine or other, is more, not has sense to outline the question, already that the gene egoista this in both simultaneously.

    For so much, the machines have the trend to to help so much more to other machine how much more genes equal may have. For example, a be live has trend to to help to the of its same kind.

    Is of to wait that the trend to it be helped between relations it will be but strong that between individual without links familiar. Between two brothers the quantity of genes equal is much more high. Without embargo, the brothers compete for the food that offer the mother, and compete precisely because each indivuduo possess a greater number of genes equal to the of if same (the 100%, evidently) that the that it is find in its brother.

    Other reason more basic is that the trends not they should, compulsorily, it be expressed immediately. Yet when the circumstances they will be auspicious, it is try of a process slow. Of fact, the individual of a society they can it be behaved according to a Strategy Not Evolutivamente Stable, and we should to wait that in many cases occur this, while the society it is tending toward a EEE. Observing a population in a moment anyone, not we have for what to find a EEE. The probabilities of to find a EEE they will be more high how much more stable it will be the environment in that it is find.

    Dawkins there is been accused of to try the genes as unit of selection. Though the selection acts on individual, is evident that the selection of individual modify the joint genetic of the population, it that indirect and estadísticamente produces a selection of genes. ¡Also we could to criticize to almost all the biologists for to try to the individual as unit of reproduction! Puede to seem astonishing, but the animal not us we reproduced, to the less, not directly. Not we produced copies of we same: we produced copies of our genes and these, combined such time with the of other individual, and affected for the environment, will produce a new be. The issue crucial is until that point the selection of individual affect to the selection of genes. Using a metaphor, the integrating of a group of rock (genes) form a joint musical (chain of ADN, genotipo) that it is develop composing songs (fenotipo, be live) that it is listen in the radio (environment) together with other songs. The selection acts on the songs (fenotipo), but is of to suppose that the selection of songs produces, in definitive, a selection of musicians (genes).

    En obras

    [ Back to Index ]

    For what to co-operate

    Che: ¿You see this bread of sugar, Debray? [...] We put that weight 20 grams. With it that we could to make two good chunks. Two hundred calories for each one and nothing more. We put that you surround 10 hungry and all depend of you ¿That you would make?

    Debray: Would draw to the luck the two benefitted.

    Che: ¿For what?

    Debray: More is worths two companions that may have the opportunity of to survive eating a little that ten that not may have no, eating ten times nothing.

    Che: Since you you mistake, Debray. Each which it must to have its crumbs and that it will be it that God wants. The revolution has its principles. And always there is two bureaucrats less.

    Debray: ¿Believes that is better that fall with all safety ten revolucionarios in absolute equality of conditions?

    Che: Always that the moral it be to unless, the revolution also it it will be. If not ¿that sense has?

    En obras

    [ Back to Index ]

    ¿Is simpre positive the cooperation?

    The cooperation, entendida as pacto party for all the parts, and not as altruism, puede that not always reporte advantages, or to the less its aspects negativos they can to arrive to be very meaningful.

    "The salvaje caza when has hunger, and to the to hunt obedece to a impulso natural. The that to a hour determined is going all the tomorrows to its work, procede fundamentally for the same impulso, that is the of to assure its life: but in this case its impulso is indirecto and is a consequence of abstractions, beliefs and acts volitivos. In the moment is that the man leaves for its work not has hunger, post that already there is desayunado. Understand sencillamente that will return to to have hunger and that the to go to its work is the middle of satisfacer its hunger future. The impulses they are irregulares, and the habits in the society civilized have that be regulares. Between the wild until the companies colectivas they are impulsivas and espontáneas. When the tribu is going to the war, the noise of the tambor you enardece militarmente and the excitación gregaria comunica to each individual the necessary activity. The companies modernas not they can realizarse of this manner. When has that to leave a train in a moment accurate is impossible inspirar to the mozos, to the maquinista or to the commissioned of signs for middle of a music bárbara. Make its work because has that it be made; its motives they are, since, indirectos; its impulso not is toward the activity, but to the recompensa ulterior of the activity.

    Many aspects of the life social adolecen of the same defect. There is many persons that hablan between yes, not for the pleasure of to speak, but thinking in the benefits that you there is of reportar the cooperation. In all the moments of its life the man it is abrumado for the restricciones of its impulso; if it is alegre, not it must to go cantando neither bailando for the streets, and if it is sad, not it is well that it is sit in the aceras to llorar, obstruyéndo the tránsito.

    [..] The society civilized is impossible without large restricciones to the impulso natural, post that the impulso natural not produces but the forms more elementales of cooperation social and not the forms complex that exige the organization economic modern." Erich Fromm, (p. 160-161)

    [ Back to Index ]


    LibroRussell, Bertrand. 1ª Ed. 1978 15ª Ed. 1997. La conquista de la felicidad. Ed. Espasa Calpe. Madrid.
    LibroFromm, Erich. 12ª Reimpresion. 1991 El arte de amar. Ed. Paidos. Barcelona.
    LibroMorgan, Marlo. 1996. Las voces del desierto (Muttant Message Down Under). Ediciones B.
    LibroJáuregui, José Antonio. 1990. El ordenador cerebral. Editorial Labor. Un punto de vista muy original acerca del ser humano, la inteligencia y el darwinismo.
    LibroRedfield, James. 1997. Las nueve Revelaciones. Ediciones B, S.A. Se podría catalogar como "libro de la nueva era" (new age). Trata acerca de la evolución, muy en la línea de Teilhard de Chardin y la Gestalt, con sugerencias muy útiles para la vida de cada uno.
    LibroKropotkin, Pedro. 1970. El apoyo mutuo. Ediciones Madre Terra. Uno de los pocos que se atreve a criticar el darwinismo.
    LibroHoyle, Fred. 1983. El universo inteligente. Ed. Grijalbo. Una valiente crítica al darwinismo.
    ArtículoCastrodeza, Carlos. 1997. La evolución sin Darwin: La biología ultramontana, en la revista "Revista de Libros", número 9 (septiembre de 1997). Ed. fundación Caja Madrid.
    LibroBarnett, S.A. y Otros. 1962. Un siglo después de Darwin 1. La Evolución. Alianza Editorial.
    LibroDawkins, Richard. 1994. El gen egoísta. Salvat Ciencia.
    LibroTaibo II, Paco Ignacio. 1997. Ernesto Guevara, también conocido como el Ché (Biografía). Ed. Planeta, pp 669-670.

    [ Back to Index ]

    ¡You are guest to hold, criticize and collaborate with your ideas!
    Send your commentaries, questions, suggestions, or criticize to E-mail
    [ Home Page Castellano | Home Page English ]
  • Translation