Nature, Nurture... -- Choice?
Let it be known that this thread was originally started by River. In an error of moderation I, Redpepper, made it by someone else and merged some threads together. In an attempt to rectify the situation I have gone through and indicated the writer where ever possible so that the conversation can continue. I'm sorry that this mistake has happened. Please understand that everything that the moderators could do was considered and tried... hopefully it is possible to pick up where we left off.
I stumbled upon this bit of text while reading articles found on the web.:
"When scientists inserted a piece of DNA from a monogamous species of mice (prairie voles) into males from a different--and highly promiscuous--mice species, the latter turned fervently monogamous. What is more striking is that some people carry an extra bit of DNA in a gene responsible for the distribution of vasopressin receptors in the brain (a hormone associated with attachment bonds), while others do not, and that piece of DNA is very similar to the one found in the monogamous prairie voles. Although the implications of this finding for our understanding of human mating await further clarification, it strongly suggests that a diversity of relationship styles--both monogamous and polyamorous--may be genetically imprinted in humans."
Much more needs to be learned, but maybe there's something to the notion I'd previously not taken so seriously. Maybe some people are "naturally" monogamous and others are "naturally" prone to be non-monogamous or polyamorous? That is, there may be a biological difference between those humans inclined to be monogamous and those inclined to be non-monogamous.
If this turns out to be the case, there are some tough -- very tough -- issues and questions to be addressed. Suppose a person is biologically predisposed to become non-monogamous and yet his socialization in family and culture intensely inculcates monogamy? This person may insist that he/she is "naturally monogamous".
That's a very interesting Thought isnt it? While I like to think I am just who I am..because I am Me... Its kinda like The theory that you "choose" to be gay...I didnt chose.. Its just who I am.
But it would be interesting to see how it would go if they put the DNA of the Promiscuous Mice into the monogamous mice...would they suddenly be Promiscuous?
Fascinating find though JRM! I think it would be much easier to deal with issues if there is understanding that people are naturally different and genetically wired mono and poly. That would clear up why I simply can't put myself into a place to really understand how someone loves more than one person as "lovers".
Some people are simply not very well socialized, but are prone to question and even reject common social norms, taboos and expectations. It's a temperament thing--and very common among practicing poly folk.
Of course, we're all speculating -- and none of us has a solid handle on the facts of the matter.
So..., as I'm inclined to do when presented with puzzles or questoins, I went poking around on the internets to see what's up.
The subject matter of my inquiry was the biology of mating, of monogamy and non-monogamy.... Turns out that monogamy is quite rare among animals, generally, and mammals especially. And even where monogamy does occur among animals, it is typically just "social monogamy" that's going on at home or in the nest. Sexual monogamy is the rarest of the rare -- among humans and animals.... Which brings me to my point and my question.
You see, I'm fine with thinking of us humans as one animal species among others. Yet many people -- probably most -- will be offended by that idea. "We're not animals! We're human!"
My point is that we're humans and animals.
My question is, Does this statement offend you?
"You and me baby ain't nothing but mammals so let's do it like they do on the Discovery Channel"?
I'm sorry. That just immediately popped into my head. For me, humans ARE animals. We're just animals with higher brain functions which, unfortunately, most of us use to the detriment of eachother, other species, and the world in general.
As far as mono vs poly, it would be interesting to see if there were a genetic link, just as it would be interesting to conclusively prove a genetic link for homosexuality. But, as far as I'm concerned, it doesn't matter. I am who I am. You are who you are. As long as no one is being hurt and all are happy, live and let live.
I think I'll make it my signature for a bit. How swinger of me.
Last edited by redpepper; 03-24-2011 at 04:59 AM.