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Michael Folkesson
24-02-10, 20:07
I read Maciamo's summary of Turkic replacement of IE languages in Central Asia and I found myself asking these questions. I don't actually expect an answer, as it could partly be seen as philosophical even though my line of thought tried to keep a rational approach.

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Is the hunter-gatherer group, the nomadic tribe, the pastorals, the settlers, the city state, the empire, the unitarian modern national state, the federal-confederal state and the international communities, global forums considered the same tribal system evolved along a path of different levels of primitivity-complexity-simplexity, or is the tribe seen as a cultural aspect that we left behind in the dawn of civilization?


→I.e. is the tribal behaviour a basic human trait, or simply put, are we still just living in tribes?


As all flock animals keep together - communicate, share a rule system and moral - is a flock of animals the same and just another word for tribe? Is safety in number a precursor to cooperation, are they the same thing, or are they not connected behaviour?


Could the flock/tribe behaviour be a trait that evolved with a common ancestor for all flock animal including us, or is that a behaviour that evolved independently like birds and bats taking to the air with no relation; just a commonly adopted method when giving an advantage?


If that behaviour would be a common heritage, how far back would that common ancestral trait go? Is the shoal of fish and the bee swarm a common heritage shared with us? Plankton?


Could it be that flock behaviour is as old as life and the most basic behaviour of life, and that those animals and organisms who do not interact in such a behaviour simply have left it through evolution as it gave less advantage?


→ I.e. have all life forms evolved from a flock animal/organism at some point in time?

Maciamo
24-02-10, 20:59
Is the hunter-gatherer group, the nomadic tribe, the pastorals, the settlers, the city state, the empire, the unitarian modern national state, the federal-confederal state and the international communities, global forums considered the same tribal system evolved along a path of different levels of primitivity-complexity-simplexity, or is the tribe seen as a cultural aspect that we left behind in the dawn of civilization?


→I.e. is the tribal behaviour a basic human trait, or simply put, are we still just living in tribes?

Our social network is limited to a few hundreds (or maybe thousands) individuals, because it is just not feasible to know or keep contact with everyone on Earth. But I don't think it is a tribal behaviour. Tribes tend to be extended families. Modern society is just the opposite. It has never been easier to get to know people from all over the world. Tribes stay in a close circle, where everyone knows everyone. We live in a society where each individual has his/her own friends and acquaintances that rarely match that of other friends, as Facebook has shown us.




As all flock animals keep together - communicate, share a rule system and moral - is a flock of animals the same and just another word for tribe? Is safety in number a precursor to cooperation, are they the same thing, or are they not connected behaviour?


Yes, you could say that gregarious animals live in tribes, as our ancestors did.




Could the flock/tribe behaviour be a trait that evolved with a common ancestor for all flock animal including us, or is that a behaviour that evolved independently like birds and bats taking to the air with no relation; just a commonly adopted method when giving an advantage?


If that behaviour would be a common heritage, how far back would that common ancestral trait go? Is the shoal of fish and the bee swarm a common heritage shared with us? Plankton?


The flock/tribe behaviour evolved independently. Not all mammals are gregarious. Indeed many are solitary, like cats, squirrels, foxes... The same is true for birds, except that their are rarely true lone birds, but more couples. Small fish stay in flock to protect themselves from predators. Big fish are often individualistic. Insects are usually individualistic too.

Bees, termites and ants are a notable exception because they are all twins (workers) or half-siblings, as only one queen give birth to the whole colony. You could see a group of ants/termites/bees as a single body, just like the cells of our body compose a single individual. That's why ants, termites or bees won't hesitate to sacrifice themselves for the benefit of the group, a behaviour not witnessed in other animals.





Could it be that flock behaviour is as old as life and the most basic behaviour of life, and that those animals and organisms who do not interact in such a behaviour simply have left it through evolution as it gave less advantage?

[INDENT]→ I.e. have all life forms evolved from a flock animal/organism at some point in time?


No, because it depends a lot of the species, wherever you look in the genealogy.