Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?
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19-03-2012, 08:44 AM
Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?
I'm writing a new theological note about morality.

Since there are like eleventy-billion threads about morality, I'm too lazy to search through each one to try and glean something useful or the link.

So, could someone provide the scientific evidence of animals showing morality and empathy?

Also, if you want to add anything, feel free. I may put it in the note.

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19-03-2012, 10:11 AM
RE: Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?
Also, what would the best word(s) to described something that is above morality?

Morally autonomous?

Autonomic morality?

Something else?

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19-03-2012, 11:02 AM
RE: Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?
Is this what you're looking for?

Abstract:
Quote:Empathy is thought to be unique to higher primates, possibly to humans alone. We report the modulation of pain sensitivity in mice produced solely by exposure to their cagemates, but not to strangers, in pain. Mice tested in dyads and given an identical noxious stimulus displayed increased pain behaviors with statistically greater co-occurrence, effects dependent on visual observation. When familiar mice were given noxious stimuli of different intensities, their pain behavior was influenced by their neighbor's status bidirectionally. Finally, observation of a cagemate in pain altered pain sensitivity of an entirely different modality, suggesting that nociceptive mechanisms in general are sensitized.

Of all the ideas put forth by science, it is the principle of Superposition that can undo any power of the gods. For the accumulation of smaller actions has the ability to create, destroy, and move the world.

"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." -W. E. Henley
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19-03-2012, 11:06 AM (This post was last modified: 19-03-2012 11:07 AM by kingschosen.)
RE: Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?
Glaucus, yes it was.

Now, is there any other evidence of other animals showing empathy? i.e. dolphins, primates?
Quotes are broken, but you can still see it if you quote the reply:

Empathy is thought to be unique to higher primates, possibly to humans alone. We report the modulation of pain sensitivity in mice produced solely by exposure to their cagemates, but not to strangers, in pain. Mice tested in dyads and given an identical noxious stimulus displayed increased pain behaviors with statistically greater co-occurrence, effects dependent on visual observation. When familiar mice were given noxious stimuli of different intensities, their pain behavior was influenced by their neighbor's status bidirectionally. Finally, observation of a cagemate in pain altered pain sensitivity of an entirely different modality, suggesting that nociceptive mechanisms in general are sensitized.

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19-03-2012, 11:10 AM
RE: Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?
I think I've heard about other examples, but I'm not sure about scientific studies...I'll look around once I get out of Economics class Big Grin.

Of all the ideas put forth by science, it is the principle of Superposition that can undo any power of the gods. For the accumulation of smaller actions has the ability to create, destroy, and move the world.

"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." -W. E. Henley
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19-03-2012, 12:10 PM
Photo RE: Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?
I am an amoralist. I have no belief in morality. It is a human made concept.
Empathy does not imply morality.


Anyway, some animal world examples that could either be perceived as animal morality or proof that human morality is simply survival instinct same as in other animals.

Battle at Kruger

Elephants kill Rhinos
Without adults to guide them on "moral" behaviour they go on a Rhino killing rampage, once adults are introduced they leave the rhinos be.
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19-03-2012, 01:37 PM (This post was last modified: 19-03-2012 01:58 PM by Glaucus.)
RE: Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?
Here is an article from Nature regarding rats. Studies that research larger animals showing empathy will probably be tougher to find because they're (generally) based on observation in the wild, rather than controlled lab experiments. People tend to be more opposed to lab experiments done on larger animals, especially mammals. Though it would make sense that empathy found in rats would suggest that other animals (or at least other mammals) are capable of empathy as well, so there probably is more research to be found in the field of neuroscience.

Ironically, people feel less empathy towards rats and mice, the very animals that we're studying empathy on.
(19-03-2012 12:10 PM)Stevil Wrote:  I am an amoralist. I have no belief in morality. It is a human made concept.

I don't know what you mean by this...morality is simply the ability to distinguish right from wrong, the only problem comes from defining right and wrong. There are even arguments about who and what can be included in moral consideration (animals, plants, children, etc.). But I'd say morality itself exists, and is not a human construct. It probably requires higher brain functions, but not necessarily sentience.

There are different ideas on how to go about defining right an wrong: Deontology says there are moral absolutes, Utilitarianism says the greatest good for the greatest number, Rawls says that the most just action is the right one, and many more. I tend to lean more towards Rawls' argument that justice leads to what is right. He said that the action must be considered from each prospective, the ones committing the action, the ones receiving it, and the bystanders.

Of all the ideas put forth by science, it is the principle of Superposition that can undo any power of the gods. For the accumulation of smaller actions has the ability to create, destroy, and move the world.

"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." -W. E. Henley
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19-03-2012, 02:17 PM
RE: Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?
[xquote='Glaucus']
"I don't know what you mean by this...morality is simply the ability to distinguish right from wrong, the only problem comes from defining right and wrong. There are even arguments about who and what can be included in moral consideration (animals, plants, children, etc.). But I'd say morality itself exists, and is not a human construct. It probably requires higher brain functions, but not necessarily sentience."
[/xquote]

There is no objective right or wrong.

The concept of morality hides the details, the person's definition or goal towards deciding if something is right or wrong. It assumes that right and wrong are absolutes. That if something is wrong then it is always wrong from all points of view, in all situations. Life is much more complex than that.

Morality assumes that right and wrong apply externally to the self and hence can be used to judge others by, as opposed to personal values which are used as a quick guide for the self. When judging others based on your own sense of morality (especially basing law on morality) then you run the risk of oppressing people and thus creating conflict within society.

In my opinion we are better off without the idea of morality. We will be much less judgmental, more tolerant and appreciative of diversity, there will be less oppression, less conflict.
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19-03-2012, 02:31 PM
RE: Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?

In my opinion we are better off without the idea of morality. We will be much less judgmental, more tolerant and appreciative of diversity, there will be less oppression, less conflict.


This is a problem right here. This is a moral statement. Your assumption is that your opinion is right and should be universally accepted based on your basic knowledge and common sense.

As you know, this isn't true. Some people might view being judgmental, intolerant, oppressive, and non-diverse as being moral. This is why there needs to be morality.

Being amoral, in theory, is ideal; however, we do not live in a utopian world, and as long as there are people who disagree with your aforementioned statement, there will be the need for morality.

This is why morality is based on two primitive traits: empathy and selfishness.

Generally speaking (not always), showing empathy towards others is considered being moral and showing selfishness towards others is considered being immoral.

Again, I think being amoral is basically sticking your head in the sand and saying "nuh-uh". It's an impractical theory at best.

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19-03-2012, 02:33 PM
RE: Yes, I'm lazy, but can someone show me that morality link about mice and empathy?
Morality doesn't assume right or wrong are absolutes, just that there are right and wrong answers to a situation. Your moral views are simply a tool that you use to distinguish right from wrong, but I don't think it's something that is really up for debate (though, how you use that tool is definitely debatable). So to say that you are "amoral" gives people a different view than what you're trying to say as it suggests that you have no means of distinguishing right from wrong.

The morals of a society are external though, because they are the collective views of right and wrong held by society. Admittedly, they are slow to update and will get us into trouble in some situations (slavery, discrimination, etc.), but that seems due to the slow pace of cultural views that require the death of older generations to advance, rather than the fault of morality itself.

Of all the ideas put forth by science, it is the principle of Superposition that can undo any power of the gods. For the accumulation of smaller actions has the ability to create, destroy, and move the world.

"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." -W. E. Henley
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