April 24, 2014

Problem Solvers

 I've been thinking lately.  Amazing, right?
But has anyone else noticed that people easily notice things that are not like them?  For instance, if you were sitting in a restaurant and someone with some strange skin disease walked by, you would notice them.  Our first instinct, unfortunately, is to stare.  Why do we stare?  Is it because we are innately judgemental? Or perhaps because we don't want to 'catch' the same thing.  I know, it sounds horrible.  That person with the skin problem can't control it.  They very likely don't enjoy being stared at or given looks.  I understand that, but that is not what I'm getting at.
 The thought crossed my mind that if said skin problem is contagious, we don't want it.  So our attention being drawn to something out of place is a survival instinct.  Other animals notice when things are out of place.  If they didn't they would be unaware and likely prey for whatever other animal wanted to eat them. Wild birds know to be afraid of cats and people, but they recognize a bird of the same species to be 'safe.'

 So are we nothing more than a slightly smarter animal?  What sets us apart from them?  Other animals can solve problems in order to survive.  They can recognize 'who' and 'what' and 'where,'...
 Some people would argue that our ability to use logic sets us apart from other animals.  I would go further.  We are able to ask the questions 'how,' 'why,' and 'when.'  
 Must we be problem solvers in order to survive?
 What would we be without asking questions? 

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