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For some reason, a lot of people have this belief that only humans are capable of caring for one another and that other animals can't feel empathy/sympathy. This entire herd came running to fight off multiple lions- yet a human child is run over twice, laying in the middle of the road, and 18 people pass and do nothing. Maybe we're the callous ones, amirite?

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In a proper hunt, that baby
would've been killed and the rest would've ran away. Lions regularly commit infanticide, toss a bone between two friendly dogs and they'll fight like complete strangers. Its easy to pull one example and then make a broad claim like we're more callous than other animals. The truth is, we're no different than other animals. We have moments where we care far beyond the norm and we have moments where we just don't give a shit about each other.

Anonymous +6Reply
@In a proper hunt, that baby would've been killed and the rest would've ran away. Lions regularly commit...

I appreciate this comment.

I understand perfectly well that there are cruel people out there, there are indifferent people out there, and there are people who will go out of their way to help. Like Fuzala said above, there is a lot of variance when it come to that behavior.

The bystander effect which was also mentioned is a very powerful phenomenon and when you couple that with what I suspect is a high rate of occurrence for people to be lying on the street, it becomes easy to get occustomed to the point where you assume no responsibiity when you see such things. It doesn't make us less loving and empathetic than animals.

As a counter-point, I could point out the people on the 9/11 flight who retook the plane because they weren't gonna let more people die as a result of inaction.

@In a proper hunt, that baby would've been killed and the rest would've ran away. Lions regularly commit...

The point really wasn't supposed to be we're more callous, though sometimes we are, it was supposed to be that humams are wrong when theu think only we have empathy. I was gonna edit the last line to "sometimes we're more callous than animals" for the exact reason you said but it was too late.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are 0Reply
@Frank_n_Furter The point really wasn't supposed to be we're more callous, though sometimes we are, it was supposed to be that...

I don't think animal empathy is comparable to human empathy cause I don't think their 'empathy' stretches much further than natural instinct.

Anonymous 0Reply
@I don't think animal empathy is comparable to human empathy cause I don't think their 'empathy' stretches much...

Our empathy doesn't stretch past natural instinct either. If our brains weren't meant to do it, they wouldn't. We instinctively feel empathy because it is beneficial to our survival.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are +1Reply
@Frank_n_Furter Our empathy doesn't stretch past natural instinct either. If our brains weren't meant to do it, they wouldn't. We...

We have the ability to deny our natural instincts. Like giving up food when we're hungry, so that others can eat. That's the only difference between us and them.

Anonymous 0Reply
@We have the ability to deny our natural instincts. Like giving up food when we're hungry, so that others can eat...

Other animals do that, too. For example, it would be in a chimp's instinct to save himself from the explosion that happened in China not to long ago and only worry about their own children, but you see a chimp pick up a puppy and start running with it to save a creature it shouldn't institutionally give a shit about (you can google the image, I don't feel like linking it.) Humans aren't special or different or uncomparable to other animals, they just like to think they are.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are 0Reply
@Frank_n_Furter Other animals do that, too. For example, it would be in a chimp's instinct to save himself from the explosion that...

It took two minutes of googling to find out that the picture is a hoax, and that its probably just a monkey stealing a dog. But our suppression of natural instinct goes beyond just empathy. We climb high mountains with temperatures and oxygen levels we can't naturally survive just for the hell of it. We commit suicide. We starve ourselves to 'look good'. No other animal would willing to those any of those things because it goes against their instinct to survive. We are very different in many ways but similar in even more ways. In terms of our ability to empathize with each other I think we're worlds apart from other animals.

Anonymous 0Reply
@It took two minutes of googling to find out that the picture is a hoax, and that its probably just a monkey...

Is it? Well, stealing a dog isn't in a monkey's instinct. There's debate about animals committing suicide. Being anorexic can even be explained by instinct- people want to look good to be able to attract mates, when the idea of what good and normal looks like is distorted, instinct makes you want to look like what you think is normal. We climb mountains because it is our instinct to explore and discover. Nothing, not even humans, defies nature, it is typical human arrogance to think we alone can defy the way nature has made us. Without testing the limbic system of every animal in the world, it is impossible to say we are more emotionally adept. Even if ours is more complex, all that means it is more complex. It's still the same thing, not world's apart. One animals ability to empathize compared to ours might be like "the apple is red" compared to "the fruit possessed a shade of color of 700 nanometers." They mean the exact same thing, even if one is more complex. And for all we know, another animal may have feelings more complex than our own due to a the structural complexity of its limbic system. Point is, we aren't the only ones with empathy.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are 0Reply
@Frank_n_Furter Is it? Well, stealing a dog isn't in a monkey's instinct. There's debate about animals committing suicide. Being...

Well we don't know the relationship between the dog and the monkey. The monkey could simple be curious. But even people with mates will starve themselves, and there's no logical reason to explore and discover places that have already been explored and discovered. We climb mountains for the thrill not the discovery. I agree, at times other animals can abandon natural instincts and do unnatural things, but this is uncommon. Humans do this much more frequently. Also, we only need to observe animal behaviour to see that they don't have more complex emotions than us and that they don't have the same conscious knowledge of existence as we do. They may have empathy, but not as complex as ours.

Anonymous -2Reply
@Well we don't know the relationship between the dog and the monkey. The monkey could simple be curious. But even...

The problem with everything you're saying is that you assume that 1 we've studied all animals and that 2 their emotions manifest in the same way ours do.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are +4Reply
@Frank_n_Furter The problem with everything you're saying is that you assume that 1 we've studied all animals and that 2 their...

The problem with what you said is it shows a lack of understanding in evolutionary biology. But lets agree to disagree. This debate feels very circular.

Anonymous 0Reply
@The problem with what you said is it shows a lack of understanding in evolutionary biology. But lets agree to...

Actually my friend I'd say it's you that has shown lack in understanding. You assume things an evolutionary biologist would never say. To say "even people with mates starve themselves" as an argument for humans going against their instincts and for you to be able to claim other animals are not as complex emotionally as us when biologists haven't even studied a good majority of other animals shows your ignorance. Someone educated in evolutionary biology wouldn't say humans act beyond instinct- so don't sit here and act like you're even able to make a call on who knows what they're talking about and who doesn't.

Anonymous +2Reply
@The problem with what you said is it shows a lack of understanding in evolutionary biology. But lets agree to...

Nothing I've said shows lack of understanding of evolutionary biology. You actually show a great deal of ignorance in that field just by bringing it up, the study of evolutionary biology isn't about where humans rank on complexity in comparison to other animals- that and the fact you claim humans are the most complex emotionally despite biologists not having researched the majority of animals on the planet and the fact you think humans can act beyond instinct shows you don't know much about it. Sure, we can agree to disagree.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are +1Reply
@Frank_n_Furter Nothing I've said shows lack of understanding of evolutionary biology. You actually show a great deal of ignorance...

Sorry, that was very arrogant of me to say. I don't know why I said it.
I'll respond to all with one response. Ok, so I do agree that at the root of almost all human behaviour is instinct. Lets take mating for instant. It's inborn in all of us (except maybe asexuals but I think thats a genetic thing). But the way we go about it is unique to almost all humans. We all have a unique story about how our partners courted us, or how we courted them. There's no inborn courtship ritual in humans. So, although the need to mate is inborn, the way we go about it isn't. For other animals, it is. Their entire behaviour is instinctual. They almost never deviate from the norm. We don't seem to have a norm. Or not nearly to the same degree as other animals. So the root of our behaviour is inborn but the way we go about is not. I've said that in 3 different ways now. Just like starving ourselves may be rooted in a natural instinct to want to feel accepted, but the way we do it is not instinctual. This is why I feel human emotion is not comparable to that of animals.
Also, thrill seeking and curiosity is not inborn because it's not natural to all humans. And I agreed that animals also at times seem

Anonymous 0Reply
@Frank_n_Furter Nothing I've said shows lack of understanding of evolutionary biology. You actually show a great deal of ignorance...

to abandon instinct. But this is more common in humans. Far more common. At least from all the animals we've studied. I can't find an article that even suggests that animal emotion is as complex as human emotion, or reasoning. Most biologist I find accept that we have the most complex form of reason and the most broad range of emotions on the planet. This is from studying the behaviour patterns of other animals. We're animals as well so it's not unreasonable to assume that if animals displayed our same range of emotions, they would manifest in a similar way. At least among other primates.
I hope that doesn't seem like a contradiction. And again, sorry about that jab about evolutionary biology. It was as childish as my name.

Anonymous 0Reply
@to abandon instinct. But this is more common in humans. Far more common. At least from all the animals we've...

For the record, I also don't think mammalian emotions are comparable to reptilian emotions. Domesticated dogs and cats also seem to have a wider range of emotions and higher levels of intelligence than other animals. I just don't think there's an animal that is comparable to humans in terms of complexity and intelligence.

Anonymous 0Reply
@For the record, I also don't think mammalian emotions are comparable to reptilian emotions. Domesticated dogs and...

Mammals vs reptiles maybe. Look up bonobo sexuality or dolphin rape for various approaches to mating Also check out information on crows and parrots for question on non-mamalian emotions.

VicZincs avatar VicZinc Yeah You Are 0Reply
@VicZinc Mammals vs reptiles maybe. Look up bonobo sexuality or dolphin rape for various approaches to mating...

Still not as broad and complex as humans. Compared to other animals, yes, those behaviors indicate a high level of intelligence. Compared to us, its nothing. But I think we're at the point where we can't agree with each other, so lets end the discussion. Colebowl is probably sick of all the notifications.

Anonymous 0Reply
@Well we don't know the relationship between the dog and the monkey. The monkey could simple be curious. But even...

The monkey could be curious- just like humans are curious to go to new places. Is your curiosity about a place gone simply because other people have been there? Is thrill seeking not part of human nature? People want to find mates and stay attractive to them. Humans don't act outside of instinct no matter how much you want to think you can.

Anonymous 0Reply
@The monkey could be curious- just like humans are curious to go to new places. Is your curiosity about a place gone...

Humans love to think that human's are above instinct and that we have some higher authority or level of consciousness that makes up better than dumb animals. It is such bullshit. You are right-on.

VicZincs avatar VicZinc Yeah You Are +1Reply

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tyrannyvigilants avatar tyrannyvigilant Yeah You Are +1Reply
@tyrannyvigilant <iframe width="420" height="315" src="ameborder="0"...

I saw that one! I love how the dog is trying to use it's paws to pull the other dog to safety, not it's teeth.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are 0Reply
Anonymous 0Reply
@Frank_n_Furter http://www.livescience.com/1737...w-empathy.html This one is graphic

this one person saved a kid
and ended up getting sued for interfering
can you believe that?

this one lady saved a man from a burning car
even though she knew it could explode
she didn't even know the guy

overall though
I think that people and animals do cruel and heroic things

fuzalas avatar fuzala Yeah You Are +6Reply
@fuzala this one person saved a kid and ended up getting sued for interfering can you believe that? this one lady saved...

It is a sad fucking day when you can get sued for saving someone.

That is wonderful. Acts like this make me happy. However, as the video of the little girl shows, most people aren't willing to help even if they themselves aren't in danger.

I agree. However, I think it's possible some kinds of animals are generally more empathetic than humans, specifically social animals that live in packs.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are +4Reply
@Frank_n_Furter It is a sad fucking day when you can get sued for saving someone. That is wonderful. Acts like this make me...

I think there's too much variance within each species
to say that one species is more empathetic than another

what happened in that video is disgusting
but it's not something that's going to happen everywhere

I know for sure that it wouldn't happen in my neighborhood
if there's a small fire on the wires while they're driving
people call in like crazy even though the fire doesn't hurt them directly

I forgot the term for it (observer something?) where if there's a group of people
many don't do anything because they think for sure that someone else is going to act

people feel more responsible to help when they see that there isn't much of a possibility of someone else doing so

fuzalas avatar fuzala Yeah You Are +4Reply
@fuzala I think there's too much variance within each species to say that one species is more empathetic than another...

Humans are very genetically similar to each other. It's easy to say "humans are smarter than dogs" because even though there is differences between different dogs and differences between different humans, there's a big enough difference between a dog and human brain to know we're smarter (namely the size of the frontal and prefrontal cortex), I don't think it would be that much of a stretch for another species to be more empathetic than us due to a difference in our brain.

Yes, I've heard of that effect before, and it's interesting to see a group of humans not do something because they think someone else will and a group of buffalo all doing something together to save one of the young. There's a good chance that comes from them having more of a pack mentality while we as humans are more individual, but I could easily see another animal having a more complex limbic system than us thus being more emotionally adept.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are +2Reply
@Frank_n_Furter Humans are very genetically similar to each other. It's easy to say "humans are smarter than dogs" because even...

but each society of people is different

some societies are individualistic
and some are collectivist
some are in between

so culture can have an influence
and there are probably a lot more factors involved

people are very social creatures too
think of tribes

people also have their version of "packs"

intelligence is obvious because of our advancements
but empathy is a whole other story

fuzalas avatar fuzala Yeah You Are +2Reply
@fuzala but each society of people is different some societies are individualistic and some are collectivist some are in...

Yes, and differences like that can cause parts of the brain to develop more or less (ex: a person who is constantly using higher thinking skills is going to develop that part of their brain more, the brain has neuroplasticity), however, we're still very similar. Even if some societies are more individualistic, there is no society where humans are not social animals.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are 0Reply
@Frank_n_Furter Yes, and differences like that can cause parts of the brain to develop more or less (ex: a person who is constantly...

even though we similar
our actions are drastically different from case to case

like the example in the video
that's not something that happens throughout

there are animals that will leave their family for dead when in danger
and then there's the example in their post where they're helping each other

cowards are existent in all the species

and I know that people are social creatures throughout
but I wanted to include the different types of societies

fuzalas avatar fuzala Yeah You Are 0Reply
@fuzala even though we similar our actions are drastically different from case to case like the example in the...

Yes I know. Not all humans are the same and not all animals are the same. My point is that animals of different kinds will have different brains that cause their natural inclinations and weaknesses very different than other animals and that animals of the same kind have brains that function similarly.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are 0Reply
@Frank_n_Furter Yes I know. Not all humans are the same and not all animals are the same. My point is that animals of different...

oh okay
I can understand that

it'd be interesting if they've done studies on this
because I've always thought that empathy was just something that was prominent in all species
it's important for survival I would think

but I never really thought of if certain species have more empathy than others overall

edit: doesn't intelligence include emotion as a factor
(emotional intelligence)?
I think that could influence empathy

fuzalas avatar fuzala Yeah You Are 0Reply
@fuzala oh okay I can understand that it'd be interesting if they've done studies on this because I've always thought...

I posted one on rat's empathy above. I don't know if all animals are capable of empathy, but it does seem like it would be important for survival.

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are 0Reply
@Frank_n_Furter I posted one on rat's empathy above. I don't know if all animals are capable of empathy, but it does seem like it...

I had no idea what you were talking about until I saw the link above the video link

I always thought that animals felt empathy too
this could've been emphasized by watching movies like Lion King and shows like Arthur

fuzalas avatar fuzala Yeah You Are 0Reply
@PhilboydStudge WTF!?!

Makes you mad, doesn't it?

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are 0Reply
@Frank_n_Furter Makes you mad, doesn't it?

I'm still trying to comprehend it. I don't understand how people can be like that... especially to a child. But to answer your question, yes. Even letting the relatives of this child beat these people to death, one by one, doesn't seem severe enough of a punishment.

Rather interresting point, although I don't agree with the last statement, that humans are the callous ones.

People never really hear about good deeds, mostly about bad deeds; War, hunger, leaving people to die on the street etc.

Just because you don't hear about it doesn't mean it doesn't happen. Heroes do exist.

@ifailedmymaths Rather interresting point, although I don't agree with the last statement, that humans are the callous...

it could also be that we remember the negative more than the positive because of the negativity bias

"The brain, Cacioppo demonstrated, reacts more strongly to stimuli it deems negative." ~Hara Marano

http://www.psychologytoday.com/...-negative-bias

fuzalas avatar fuzala Yeah You Are 0Reply
@ifailedmymaths Rather interresting point, although I don't agree with the last statement, that humans are the callous...

One animals acting with more empathy than one example of a human doesn't makes us less good than other animals, I said this a few comments above yours, "The point really wasn't supposed to be we're more callous, though sometimes we are, it was supposed to be that humams are wrong when theu think only we have empathy. I was gonna edit the last line to "sometimes we're more callous than animals" for the exact reason you said but it was too late."

Frank_n_Furters avatar Frank_n_Furter Yeah You Are 0Reply
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