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Are humans animals?

This is a discussion on Are humans animals? within the General Off Topic Discussion forums, part of the Life Beyond Horses category

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        09-04-2013, 01:14 PM
      #21
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Missy May    
    Like I said, ^, I have no reason to believe higher order mammals and birds are not intelligent.
    Elephant Painting Self Portrait - YouTube

    I think an important part of learning is to be able to distinguish between theory and fact. Parrots, for example, are highly intelligent. They do not have long childhoods, nor do they have large brains.

    The ability to communicate complex thought, IMO, is why we evolved the "way we did". This allows technology to be "communicated". The tech we have today is not the result of the "human species", it is the result of a tiny, tiny percentage of the "human species"...geniuses over a span of tens of thousands of years. It would be insane to believe other species do not have the same percentage per capita of geniuses. How would they capitalize on that in anything but a localized area (which they do), though? And, IMO, there is no emotion that humans have a "monopoly" on.
    Anyone that seriously believes animals are stupid have obviously not spent anytime watching them.

    Missy, that's why I brought up opposable thumbs and vocal chords. We've built our knowledge on the backs of previous generations because we can communicate that knowledge onto future generations. The rest of the animal kingdom essentially has to relearn every couple of generations what was already known before.
         
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        09-04-2013, 01:30 PM
      #22
    Green Broke
    Sometimes, I worry that I'm the stupid one... xD
         
        09-04-2013, 02:14 PM
      #23
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Darrin    
    Anyone that seriously believes animals are stupid have obviously not spent anytime watching them.

    Missy, that's why I brought up opposable thumbs and vocal chords. We've built our knowledge on the backs of previous generations because we can communicate that knowledge onto future generations. The rest of the animal kingdom essentially has to relearn every couple of generations what was already known before.
    ah, great minds. Those are the things I said, IMO, set us apart, also.

    I do not find humans very intelligent, personally. Not that I think I am, but I have at least worked out that communication is a two way street, for heavens sake! People are surrounded by fellow creatures that they chalk off as "unable" and "limited", and "less than", but they don't give them a chance and don't have the imagination to "consider" their perspective. It upsets me no end. I have to "get by" by telling myself I protect what I can to the best of my ability, and I give those that are with me a chance to be heard. I have found most animals remember a combo of words w hand symbols better than words. I have gone to far, I will stop.
    showjumperachel likes this.
         
        09-04-2013, 03:25 PM
      #24
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Speed Racer    
    Nope, not saying we're superior, just saying we're not in the truest sense animals. Whether that was by accident or design, does it actually matter? The fact is that we do have major differences that set us apart.

    Yes, animals do indeed teach their young, but how many nurture and house their young until their 18th year or even longer? How many rely solely on their wits and not instinct? None, other than homo sapiens.
    There are many humans out there that don't rely on their wits....because they have none! Also to say that we rely solely on our wits and not instinct is simply incorrect. Have you ever been walking to your car late at night, alone, and just feel like somebody is watching you/following you? I don't think that has anything to do with wit, and more to do with instincts.

    In addition humans are NOT the only animals who nurture and house their young until the 18th year or longer. Also, many HUMAN parents are not nearly as good as other animal species. Not all human parents house and nurture their young until their 18th birthday. In the US we are required by law to do this, but children under 18 can get emancipated with the courts permission.

    Orcas are an excellent example species to show that humans are not the only ones who nurture and house their young till 18 AND show that humans are not the only species that rely on wit(I took "solely" out because we do rely on some instinct too). There are three main different types of orcas: transient, resident, and offshore. I don't know too much about the offshore orcas, but the young of resident orcas stay with their mothers THEIR ENTIRE LIFE. Resident orca pods can grow as large as up to 40 individuals, sometimes even more. The first born son of transient orca pods typically stay with their mothers their entire life, while later offspring break off from the pod (transient pods are much smaller, typically only 3-5 individuals). Also, orcas definitely use their wits and intelligence when hunting and don't rely solely on instinct. A couple of years ago, a segment on the orcas in the antartic was aired on animal planet. The segment showed a group of orcas and a seal on an ice float. The seal was in the middle of the ice float and could not be reached by the orcas. The orcas then got together and swam side by side. They created waves with powerful thrusts from their tail and eventually knocked the seal off of the ice float. This isn't "instinct", the orcas weren't born knowing how to do this. This is problem solving and team work. This is without a doubt, intelligence. The same orcas were also observed PRACTICING this technique. They washed a seal off the ice float, but let the seal go. This was likely to teach their young how to hunt. Anyways.....probably WAY more than anybody wanted to know about orcas, haha

    Did you know that when Linus Pauling first developed his hierarchically classification system, he didn't have any reason (other than obvious physical difference) to separate humans and apes into different families (today we are in the same "superfamily" as apes, but have different families)? He did end up separating humans and apes due to political and church pressure (he was also highly religious, his slogan was "God creates, Linus arranges")

    Yes, we do have major differences that set as apart from other animals (i.e: an insect is technically an animal), but an animal is such a broad term. Ask any credible biologist, and they will tell you that without a doubt humans are animals. Of course, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but from a scientific stand point humans are animals.
    Missy May likes this.
         
        09-04-2013, 03:33 PM
      #25
    Foal
    Here is a video of the footage, because its just too amazing not to share! These animals are truly amazing


    The last 30 seconds of this video show the orcas (a different pod) letting the seal go

    Missy May and Chokolate like this.
         
        09-04-2013, 11:06 PM
      #26
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Chokolate    
    I think some other animals also care for others, flytobecat. Look at many wild animals - chimpanzees share with others in their groups, dolphins and other animals adopting orphaned young of their species, animals rescuing others from predators, for example.
    Adopting abandoned young could be seen as propagation of species. Also, animals that live in social groups are more adaptable to bonding with a different species because pack, pod, or flock equal survival.
    I don't think you can use ignoring your instincts for the argument because that is more about conditioning. Horses ignore their instincts all the time because we teach them too. Chimps have been know to use tools, wolves are strategist, bees labor for the hive.
    Perhaps death is the separator. Granted I don't know what goes on in a dolphin, snake, or sharks mind, but I believe people are the only species that contemplates what is afterlife.
         
        09-05-2013, 05:56 PM
      #27
    Super Moderator
    It is so called intelligence that sets humans above the ranking of other mammals. Our reasoning powers are better than any other mammal.
    We are born with many of the instincts for survival, a new born baby will have the ability to hang onto a furry material for several minutes. It also knows how to close its nostrils of submerged in water. These are soon lost because there is no need to use them.
    Children have an ability to read an adult. They know exactly how to push the right buttons with their parents and if not corrected will play on it. Equally they instinctively know when the verbal tone and body language is correct that there are no buttons to push.

    The civilised human is lost when taken put of their environment, yes, many would know how to survive in the wild but, we have lost the ability to smell water as the Bushmen of S. Africa and the Aborigines of Australia can.
    The civilised human does stay with the parents for a long time but, the tribes people's children can survive from a very early age on their own.
    Yes, we are all of the mammal classification. Unfortunately not always for the good!
         
        09-06-2013, 02:55 AM
      #28
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Foxhunter    
    It is so called intelligence that sets humans above the ranking of other mammals. Our reasoning powers are better than any other mammal.
    I disagree with this. Many other animals are capable of reasoning! Just see the videos of the orcas above. There are many, many more examples of orcas (as well as other mammals and animals) showing the ability to reason. Often times there are many people out there who show are INability to reason . Our "intelligence", may separate us from other mammals. But according to whose intelligent tests? Humans?

    Of COURSE homo sapiens will be the most intelligent according to our own intelligence tests! As Albert Einstein said:
    “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

    This is just my opinion, I suppose. Perhaps I'm biased from meeting too many individuals who do not meet average intelligence. I guess that's what happens when you have worked in retail!

    Foxhunter likes this.
         
        09-06-2013, 04:26 AM
      #29
    Super Moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by showjumperachel    
    I disagree with this. Many other animals are capable of reasoning! Just see the videos of the orcas above. There are many, many more examples of orcas (as well as other mammals and animals) showing the ability to reason. Often times there are many people out there who show are INability to reason . Our "intelligence", may separate us from other mammals.
    I never said that other mammals were not capable of reasoning! Both apes and birds will use tools to get to what they want and it is well known that the intelligence of dolphins and whales is outstanding. Rats too, have shown logical reasoning.

    Even some horses can think logically. I thought that someone was letting the ponies out of their field. Within an hour of them being turned out, they were on the loose. There were slip rails into their field, these had a catch to hold them in place and wee also tide. One evening after turning them out I returned and hid up the track from the gateway.
    One pony returned to the rails, he put his head under the top rail and tried to slide it along. That didn't work so he went to the catch and lifted it up, tried to slip the rail and when that didn't work he started to fiddle with the string. Took him about 5 minutes to get that undone. Top rail down, he popped the lower rail followed by his friends who had been watching.

    Majority of humans lack instinctive powers such as finding water by smell. We do still have many but choose to ignore them.

    The other thing is, how do you judge intelligence?
    One person might be brilliant at book learning, and recall all that they have learned but totally useless at practical matters and unable to change a plug.

    Today more and more emphasis is placed on examination results. More and more children are encouraged to go for higher education. When they leave the institutions they have a bit of paper saying that they can study and remember and pass exams, they have the dedication to get their heads down and stick to the work in front of them. Unfortunately, this does not mean that they can start at the top of the job they want, they are inexperienced and experience is the only thing that will get them on in the position.

    Common sense is no longer encouraged. Children are told (speaking generally) rather than being encouraged to work it out for themselves.
    I often get children asking a question that they should know the answer to. Rather than tell them I will question them back so that they draw their own answer by thinking logically. They get more from that than being told. It takes longer but, is better.

    Humans have progressed greatly, the last century has made leaps and bounds in progress,. They will continue to do so - I just wonder where it will take us!
         
        09-06-2013, 12:05 PM
      #30
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Foxhunter    
    I never said that other mammals were not capable of reasoning! Both apes and birds will use tools to get to what they want and it is well known that the intelligence of dolphins and whales is outstanding. Rats too, have shown logical reasoning.

    Even some horses can think logically. I thought that someone was letting the ponies out of their field. Within an hour of them being turned out, they were on the loose. There were slip rails into their field, these had a catch to hold them in place and wee also tide. One evening after turning them out I returned and hid up the track from the gateway.
    One pony returned to the rails, he put his head under the top rail and tried to slide it along. That didn't work so he went to the catch and lifted it up, tried to slip the rail and when that didn't work he started to fiddle with the string. Took him about 5 minutes to get that undone. Top rail down, he popped the lower rail followed by his friends who had been watching.

    Majority of humans lack instinctive powers such as finding water by smell. We do still have many but choose to ignore them.

    The other thing is, how do you judge intelligence?
    One person might be brilliant at book learning, and recall all that they have learned but totally useless at practical matters and unable to change a plug.

    Today more and more emphasis is placed on examination results. More and more children are encouraged to go for higher education. When they leave the institutions they have a bit of paper saying that they can study and remember and pass exams, they have the dedication to get their heads down and stick to the work in front of them. Unfortunately, this does not mean that they can start at the top of the job they want, they are inexperienced and experience is the only thing that will get them on in the position.

    Common sense is no longer encouraged. Children are told (speaking generally) rather than being encouraged to work it out for themselves.
    I often get children asking a question that they should know the answer to. Rather than tell them I will question them back so that they draw their own answer by thinking logically. They get more from that than being told. It takes longer but, is better.

    Humans have progressed greatly, the last century has made leaps and bounds in progress,. They will continue to do so - I just wonder where it will take us!
    From years of watching animals I've concluded all animals can reason it's more about how long it takes them to get there. Carnivores/omnivores tend to think through things faster than herbivores. At a guess that's because blades of grass don't run as fast as the herbivore eating it...I think what leads people to believe animals really are dumb is the fact those people just don't sit there long enough to watch said animals figure things out. They don't realize that the cow laying there chewing it's cud is also thinking on how to defeat the fence to get to better grass.

    Fox, schooling has turned to brute memorization of information instead of teaching the understanding of material. Unfortunately since the student sits down to cram the information in it's quickly forgotten again. So instead of getting knowledgeable but inexperienced grads we are actually getting grads that don't know squat but have a piece of paper that says they do. Colleges are complaining HS grads are not at the college freshman level of schooling so need to be retaught the basics. At the same time businesses just are not hiring college grads. There's enough older, experience and properly taught adults out there looking for work they don't have to bother teaching basics to new grads. Our school system is bad shape.
    Foxhunter likes this.
         

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