Mar 9Liked by The Living Philosophy

I'm following a plant-based diet, though lean on the Hobbesian/right-wing side of things, so take what I'm saying with however much salt you want. (I eschew veganism as a label due to the ethical claim involved.)

PETA is definitely an exemplar of the quasi-religious end of veganism. Personally I just blame normative ethical philosophies. They tend towards the universalism that constitutes most religious thought. These things are antithetical to a truly evolutionary paradigm, but sometimes I question whether or not the majority of society would ever really give such a position purchase.

I'd say there's a bit more to the story of human dietary evolution than was represented by both articles. Firstly, on the point of changes in rainfall leading to more grasslands and grazers, while that is true, I think an important intermediary step overlooked between nuts/seeds and meat was that of starchy roots and tubers. Not only do they somewhat explain the brain's preference for glucose, they absolutely required the invention of fire to be digested, which isn't the case with meat.

Meat does play an interesting evolutionary role, which we see in humans' ability to burn fat and power the brain with ketones, which together with fire was necessary for humans in colder climates pre-agriculture. Meat undoubtedly played a survival role, though as far as the carnivore position goes, the Eskimos provide an interesting case study as to potential limits of being in ketosis forever (they adapted to never go into it).

In general, most people are seeking grand narratives to cope with nihilism, and any lifestyle cope will take on a religious bent when paired with an ethical philosophy - or it'll become a political programme. The only exception being reactionary impulses that simply get entrenched into whatever position they had before, examined or not. Though those have a political programme waiting in the wings, often some offspring of fascism. But I appreciated the food for thought!

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Mar 8Liked by The Living Philosophy

I think getting people to believe there is no such thing as authenticity (that is what it would mean to truly embrace Darwinism, the view there is no stable essence to be authentic to) is a very hard sell.

It might be true that our freedom is total and we don't have to submit to anything. When religions get esoteric they all say that. In total flux, how do you decide which direction to steer mankind in? My personal choice would be the Culture mixed with The Dream of a Ridiculous Man, which I think should sound appealing to quite a lot of people.

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