Darwin, Survival of the Kindest
“Who is the fittest: those who are continually at war with one another, or those who support one another”
– Peter Kropotkin
A fitting quote in these difficult times …
Darwin’s research shows that is more correct for explaining which species survive.
Compassion is the main reason for both the human race’s survival and its ability to continue to thrive as a species.
The ‘fittest’ can actually mean be the most loving and selfless, not the most aggressive and violent.
“According to biologists from Darwin to E. O. Wilson, cooperation has been more important than competition in humanity’s evolutionary success. Compassion is the reason for both the human race’s survival and its ability to continue to thrive as a species.” – Christopher Kukk (read his article here)
Far from “survival of the fittest”, forest ecologists have discovered that plants don’t behave as individuals competing with one another. Trees are united with other trees through root systems and fungi.
The 19th Century biologist, Peter Kropotkin, sought proof of “survual of the fittest” in eastern Siberia. To his surprise he found the most successful animals werent the most competitive ones, but those who coped with the harsh environment through cooperative behavior.
Kropotkin found there was plenty of “mutual aid,” or cooperation, in nature, and this, he thought, defined the natural state. With cooperation now assuming its rightful role alongside variation and selection in contemporary evolutionary theory, it is worth remembering Kropotkin and his legacy: a dream in which not only the natural world, but also our own human cultures, evolve and thrive through cooperation.