The Moral Animal by Robert Wright

Review :

I believe whoever wants to better understand the world, know why they feel what they feel and know why people behave the way they do, has to read evolutionary psychology.

This book provided me with two critical pieces I had been missing in the puzzle of evolution.

I had learned that many desires of ours are the manifestation of our genes. I also had learned that the environment is also responsible for shaping a huge portion of our behavior. But I lacked the knowledge of the relationship between the two and I also didn't know the precise relation of the environment and the genes in forging our behavior. Now, thanx to this book, I do.

It turns out that the evolution implants knobs in our brain, but how low or high these knobs are set to, is determined by the environment. It was a huge revelation for me.

I also have been pondering the boundaries of morality. Is there any objective morality to which we can cling

Yes, now I know and it is utilitarianism. Our behavior is moral to the extent that they benefit the people and contribute the good of all. This is a touchstone with which we can hope to discern if an act is moral.

The writing was exceptional, the structure and depth of the material were superb.
I loved the book, and profoundly recommend it to anyone who aspires to reach a higher intellectual level.


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