Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

Why do humans consider themselves as intelligent?

I’ve written several blogs about the “infinity of human stupidity”, a paraphrase of a quote by Albert Einstein. Wednesday night, I suddenly wondered why humans consider themselves as intelligent. I had to write it down immediately as that thought was already trying to vanish. Language was my first answer and then a very different answer emerged.

The collective development stages in Nature appear to be these three: Needs (all lifeforms), Wants (some animals and humans), and Beliefs (only humans). Also see my other blogs on Needs, Wants & Beliefs. Actually, humans believe that they are more intelligent than any other species. This belief may be another example of human arrogance and ignorance (my blogs).

Language has united humans, In principle, all eight billion humans could act as one force. Many – if not most – humans believe that animal sounds do not constitute a language. Moreover, these animal sounds – or languages – are far from united. To a large extent, (invisible) bacteria and viruses are the only creatures that humans fear – for their power; and not their intelligence.

Lately, metal monoliths have been found in several countries (eg, Guardian). Most likely, these monoliths are human pranks suggesting alien beacons

Suppose, just suppose, that a (much) more intelligent species would arrive on Earth. Suddenly, humans would be considered as stupid in comparison with them. What would happen?

Most animals fear human intentions and deeds, apart from cats and dogs. Hence, it’s quite likely that humans would mistrust alien intentions and deeds. Moreover, many Sci-Fi movies use the very same storyline: aliens will conquer our planet for its resources (eg, food, water).

How can we be the judge of our own intelligence as long as we haven’t met a species that is (much) more intelligent?

At least, two of the complicating issues in answering this question are:

“The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.” A quote by Bertrand Russell (1872-1970), “a British polymath, philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, writer, social critic, political activist, and Nobel laureate.”

Stupid Girl (1996) by Garbage
artists, lyrics, video, Wiki-1, Wiki-2

Note: all markings (bolditalicunderlining) by LO unless stated otherwise.


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