What We Inherited From Hunter Gatherers. (The genetic memory of the past).

Underarm and public hair is difficult to explain. It may help to prevent chafing - I have very little underarm hair, and my arms chafe when I don't wear a sleeved shirt.

But honestly I suspect it was an archaic trait that was never eliminated once we began wearing clothes in public. When everyone is fully clad as they go about their daily business, selective pressures on armpit appearance will likely be weak.

This line of reasoning seems less convincing for pubic hair, however. Maybe underarm and pubic hair was positively selected in men, and hung around in women? It really is pretty strange. I'd say this issue was a problem for evolutionists, but creationist arguments are, if anything, even worse: "God decreed that thy genitals shall be hairy" seems really embarrassing for anybody who believes in God.

Wrong thread
Sorry :unsure:
I believe it is a very archaic ancestry
Did you ever asked yourself a question, why people behave in certain ways? Why it is so easy for boys to start a fight, or pretend they are knights or modern soldiers, and as a teenager volunteer for wars? Why there are generational conflicts? Why kids prefer breaks over classes? Why women talk too much? Why men are single track minded? Why are monogamous relationships so vastly popular over polygamy? Why do we eat meat, etc.?

Gross of our behavioral traits reach very far in time to the beginning of first multicellular life forms, other common traits go back to origin of mammals; like eating, feeling hunger, mating, sexual desire or even feeling of love, taste for sugar and salt, fear of snakes and bugs, many social instincts, circadian rhythm, protecting and caring for kids, having a head, hands, legs, organs, and senses.
Let’s skip these ancient and obvious ones and concentrate on interesting recent developments, the once which still baffle many people and are not well defined in their origin. Often considered and confused as cultural developments of modern times. By religious folks many of our natural wants are treated as sins, explained as a fight between good and evil.

Let’s demystify our behavior a bit.

Parts of our behavior and anatomy had the beginning in times after we have separated from Great Apes and became Hunter Gatherers (HGs), generally speaking last 4 million years. This is a very long time, 160 thousand generations (!), long enough to allow our ancestors to adjust to hunter-gatherer life style on a genetic level, which in turn gave them a big help to survive. Certain behavioral changes came in last 1-2 million years, which is the time when we got our big heads and started to talk, got abstract thinking and manage big complexities of human social life.

One can dispute genetic adaptation to new lifestyle claiming, that our behavior is only a cultural phenomenon. Having a big brain our progenitors could easily learn new behaviors from their parents or did their logical thinking themselves, rendering genetic adaptation unnecessary. It is true that we command unsurpassed, in animal kingdom, capacity for learning. It is very visible in our quick adaptation to modern technological world of last 100 years. I won't dispute that, logic and culture are sufficient to be successful, especially in fast changing environment.

However, there is another, more ancient than logic and culture way to adapt, such as adaptation to environment by means of natural selection. It changes our body to fit new environment better through beneficial DNA mutations. Likewise it can change architecture of our brain, giving us new skills, new traits, new feelings, and new instincts.

Here is how these new instincts, in other words, a new genetic memory, works:
Let’s take a fire for example, at first glance liking fire doesn’t make sense. If anything we should be afraid of fire like the rest of animals are. It is dangerous and destructive, can burn our homes with people in them, can kill us with carbon monoxide and cause cancer from long exposure of toxic fumes (I’m sure if making fire was invented these days the FDA wouldn’t approve it). However, fire happened to be extremely beneficial to HGs; keeping them warm and safe at night, letting them expand around the world, and above all, releasing more nutrients from food. Even making some foods digestible at all, doubling or tripling available calories, especially from starchy plants. For that hugely important reason we have fallen in love with fire, casting aside its dangerous dark side.

Taming fire happened a bit over 1 million years ago (40 thousand generations ago), long enough for blind genetic mutations to find useful ones, and hard-wire liking fire into our brains. This new instinct guides us by feelings. Same way any other instinct works, by guiding us with feelings of pleasure and pain. Looking at fire automatically brings feelings in us. Enjoyment of smell and crackling sound of burning wood, and pleasant feeling of comfort when we sitting close to it. We don’t need to teach our kids benefits of fire. We don’t need to wait till they slowly get used to it and stop running away from it in fear. Instead, our kids feel infatuation with fire from first site. They love playing with fire with no fear. It comes to them so naturally supported by feeling of joy and excitement, that only a genetic predisposition can explain such instantaneous and favorable behavior towards it. We don’t need to convince ourselves and our kids, to sit by fire, don’t panic, it is good for you, and repeat this teaching over and over again till we get it eventually. Genetic knowledge is instant, way faster than learned knowledge, which comes by way of constant repetition. Above all, knowledge is way more convincing than any other means, when supported by instinct and automatic positive feelings. It feels as we are drawn towards fire, like a boy to a beautiful girl, or a new born to mother’s breast. Genetic adaptation is much more energy efficient and time saving process, and we don’t need to be conscious of all benefits it brings to like it and embrace. It stands in contrast to constant repetition, to reinforce new skills in learned process.

Genetic adaptation to Hunter Gatherer’s lifestyle, persisting in modern populations, shouldn’t be much of a surprise. We only entered technological modern times recently. Before that we were farmers, for rather short time, few thousands of years (400 generations). Some of human groups are still HGs without any connection to farming or herding. By this measure we are pretty much same HGs our ancestors were, so no wonder their genetic predispositions are still guiding, and often misguiding us in today’s world. I’m sure they are behind our recent return to democracy, affair with socialism and equal rights movements, partying and drug use, or even love of shopping.

Keep in mind reading this, that most of it is based on my observations, scientific articles and research that I’ve read. When we look at population and want to conclude vital traits and trends, look at general behavior, with open statistical mind. Not all people in groups will have same behavior in all aspects. It is not a contradiction of general patterns, but rather a variety of traits nature keeps to make sure we all don’t vanish in case of dramatic environmental changes. Hence the variety of “weird” behaviors or looks in some of us.

Nice Topic
Some weeks ago there was a declaration by several scientists that "cultural evolution was making genetic evolution obsolete"

It's interesting the contrast with your point. Since is true that are several deep instincts and behaviours we preserve from our ancestors.
I personally disagree with their claim, since there's the possibility that "cultural adaptations" exist because there are allowed by genetics. Or that they may need future genetic evolution.
For example, we will need a much higher tolerance for sugar in the next 50/100/200 years, if we fail to develop that, we're gonna suffer. Lots will die for sure

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