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These and other scientific advances, McGuire writes, provide more exact information about human behavior, which in turn "facilitates a better understanding of which policies and decisions are likely to be effective. McGuire, state that new findings in neurochemistry and neuroanatomy offer valuable insights into human behavior.

Numerous studies have demonstrated that in both nonhuman primates and humans, changes in neurotransmitter levels can lead to measurable changes in behavior, function and even social status. Conversely, biologists and physicians will need to consider the legal and moral implications of their own research.

Michael McGuire and Alfonso Troisi

Hasty conclusions by uninformed lawyers, journalists or politicians could do unforeseen damage to the fundamental principles of a democratic society. Most significantly, studies have revealed that humans enter the world with many predisposed behaviors which are the result of and influenced by genetics. This predisposition applies not only to basic emotions but to behavioral strategies such as choosing a mate, protecting resources, and interacting in a social environment.

Indeed, human institutions as complex as culture and tradition can also be looked at and evaluated in the same way. In other words, political and legal decisions that impact issues such immigration policy, privatization of land and religious tolerance should be evaluated through the prism of modern biological science. Indeed, the impact of biological knowledge on law is already profound if one looks at how our interpretations of scientific information affect legal decisions in a variety of areas: environmental issues altered foods, offshore drilling , species protection , reproductive lawsuits surrogate mothering, paternity, abortion , mental illness defense alcoholism, mental retardation, premenstrual syndrome , child abuse and neglect fetal alcohol syndrome , military claims Agent Orange , post-traumatic stress syndrome and workplace claims repetitive stress disorder.

McGuire has written that biologically based insights into human behavior, the role of the environment on behavior, the role of technology such as drugs, the technical means to prolong life and the nature of culture and tradition could benefit our legal theory and practice. In the book, Darwinian Psychiatry, McGuire, along with co-author, Alfonso Troisi, make that case that psychiatry would be better served by utilizing an evolutionary model rather than the prevailing models e.

The insane woman-mental disorders and female life history-a Darwinian approach

This position is not unique and has been set forth by a number of medical professionals. More than one hundred years passed until these ideas entered mainstream scientific discussions. In , E. Wilson posited that using the same tools and reasoning as had been applied to animal and nonhuman primate studies, we could identify and utilize the evolutionarily origins of human social organization, barter and reciprocation , bonding , role playing , communication , culture , ritual and religion.

The thesis that psychiatry can achieve the status of a science has its basis in a theory of behavior which has structured protocols and agreed upon methods for testing hypotheses. At the same time the attempted program is as complex and far reaching as the human subject itself, integrating genetics , physiology , ethology , behavioral sciences , psychology and sociology into an understanding of human behavior and mental conditions. At least four ultimately caused selectively influenced behavior patterns or systems are thought to apply to Homo sapiens : survival, reproductive, kin assistance and reciprocation systems.


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Objection : Evolutionary theory is a reductionist discipline that seeks to understand behavior and mental states as a function and process of genes. Such an approach is too limited and too unsupported with scientific data to be useful. Also this makes sense when you consider autism as a spectrum disorder, the impairment is gradual. This also explains the levels of bullying such individuals have to endure usually, only when certain pro social norms exists which make it not OK to bully is it regulated.

So in hunter gatherer tribes without such norms, indivuals with heavy social impairment would probably be severely bullied and completely left alone, which means slim chance of survival, none for reproduction. Thanks to this Dr. The same 6 kinds of explanations evolutionary medicine offers for diseases in general apply to mental disorders.

Peeked at a few of the other mismatch articles. I submit that the dominant phenomenon of our era is exponentially accelerating complexity. Complexity increases weaken the efficacy of code, whether genetic, religious, legal, monetary, software, etc. I submit that the ongoing increases in complexity continue to create ever-greater mismatches with both our biological and cultural coding.

Our coding is increasingly non-selectable. Lethal mismatch.

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App lacks information processing Reach Speed Accuracy Power and is often used to throttle Creativity — all of which are information-processing fundaments for passing selection tests. An evolutionary background for mental illness is an interesting subject. A possible nature of self-consciousness can be part of it.

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If we look at what may have been the dawn of mankind in primate evolution, we can identify a specific human anxiety that came up with self-consciousness. The performance of identification with conspecifics that was amplified with the emergence of self-consciousness has probably been the source of a huge anxiety increase resulting from identifications with suffering or endangered conspecifics. And the tools developed by our ancestors to limit that anxiety cooperation, imitation ToM, … have also procured evolutionary advantages that have accelerated the evolution toward our human self-consciousness, while linking its nature to anxiety management.

Much of that ancestral anxiety is probably still active in our today human minds where she conditions many of our mental states, including mental illnesses. Bottom line, that evolutionary sourced anxiety management has created an evolutionary engine that still links our human nature to unconscious anxiety management processes.

There are a lot of epigenetic factors that make us more vulnerable to mental health problems, including language, technology and assortative mating over many generations. If the family as a natural system were considered, would there be a different understanding? All of the research focuses on the individual without the context of the family system. Which can be understood as timespace consciousness. Which is much broader than just the body. The cause for it in general terms is the rapid change in family conditions, in relation to the economy, which dissolves jobs much faster and hardens living conditions because of cost inflation and high levels of improductive bureaucracy, next to failing communication by mass media in general.

The evironment itself; in terms of timespace; has become poisonous and certainly cannot be treated by chemical medicine another job dissolving or by believing our genes are fully responsible for this. What you need is linguistic understanding and definition, as well as overlapping communication about it cognitive repair modes. So consciousness becomes parallel to behaviour again. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam.

Learn how your comment data is processed. Hit enter to search or ESC to close. Key Takeaways Through Darwinian thinking, we can determine what the adaptive function of various human behaviors and brain responses are. Berk, L. Williams, F. Jacka, A. Pasco, S. For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.


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