Bill MacKenty

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Primitive us, God-like tech. Part 2

Posted in Blogging Writing on 14 - May 2024 at 08:04 PM (2 weeks ago). 53 views.

The primary evolutionary purpose of the reptilian brain is to ensure survival through basic mechanisms, but that part of our brain isn't everything we are only part of who we are.

In today’s context, the reptilian brain's influence can be observed in our automatic responses to threats (fight or flight reactions), competitive instincts in social and professional environments, and the subconscious adherence to established routines and rituals. This part of the brain drives our most deep-seated survival behavior, which can manifest in modern settings as aggressive behavior in traffic, assertiveness in boardroom negotiations, or the territoriality sometimes displayed in communal or shared spaces.

While the reptilian brain responds with primitive, survival-oriented instincts, the more recently evolved parts of the brain—the limbic system and the neocortex—handle complex emotions and higher order thinking. These layers of the brain enable humans to engage in reasoned decision-making, empathy, and moral reasoning, which can often be in conflict with the more rudimentary impulses driven by the reptilian complex. For instance, while our reptilian brain might urge us to react aggressively to a perceived threat, our higher brain functions allow us to assess the situation rationally, often leading to more measured and considered responses.