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The abdomen, the chest, and the brain will forever be shut from the intrusion of the wise and humane surgeon. Sir John Eric Ericksen, British surgeon, appointed Surgeon-Extraordinary to Queen Victoria 1873

10. SEX Previous | Next

There are better ways to reproduce

NO one knows why we reproduce by having sex. All the arguments in favour of sex are countered by stronger arguments in favour of self-cloning: asexual reproduction, where an organism produces a copy of itself, is a much more efficient way to pass your genes down to the next generation. The puzzle is, why hasn’t asexual reproduction taken over? Asexual reproduction does exist in patches of the natural world, but sex is everywhere.

To Charles Darwin, the reason for the prevalence of sexual reproduction was “hidden in darkness”. More than a century later, in 1976, Maynard Smith said the problem with sex was so intransigent it made him feel "some essential feature of the system is being overlooked." Three decades later, the problem is still here.

The intriguing thing is, if you look at sex in terms of how it evolved its relationship with death, some interesting things begin to emerge. Could it be that sex is not the prime driver biology has taught us to believe?

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#1 - Posted: 19/08/2008 00:24

One poster posits a death switch, another, maybe the author (I haven't figured out posts from the authors comments) privileges biological death somehow as associaated (causative) to sex.

Species (I believe this to be true) extinction (which of course involves individuals) seems to be mapped by decay curves, similar to radioactive element decay, with half lives ... and etc.  I think *materialistic/mathematical* death should be foregrounded here, And not the vague notion of biological death. (Vague because there is a plenum of causes of biological death - but if species extinction/death does yield to such decay curves , and again I think this has been demonstrated) because a more materialistic and mathematical tractable cause for sex will be evoked.

My ideas on this, place sex under values/valation - (the values as read (in the human brain for example, in an area called the rostral brain stem)) are Oxygen, CO2 tensions, sugar levels - said values (the chemical energetics/values) all set over evolutionary time frames . And somehow, valuation for sex receives a paricular high valence. And the bioenergetics and behaviors associated with sex will ultimately yield to investigation - at least to the same extent , and in a similar fashion as the following dramatic , robust and fully preictable behavior.

Someone grabs you around the neck from behind immediately causing aOxygen tension, and rise in CO2 tension etc. These changes *read* in real time at the rostral brain stem, by biolological instruments (neurons...) that are many orders of magnitude more more sensitive than our best lab instruents. And you will buck, jerk, do ANYTHING to discharge the attacker to return to warranated and wanted oxygen, co2 values.. Obviously I have to cut this short

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