Men And Women Are Different

Equality does not mean equivalence

Allan Milne Lees

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Lascaux cave art. Image credit: British Council

We humans spent nearly all of our evolutionary history in conditions of scarcity. Consequently, we’re evolved to prefer indolence to activity whenever possible, as this conserves precious calories. We’re not only adapted to be physically indolent; as the brain burns a lot of blood sugar on the rare occasions we attempt to perform thinking, we’re evolved to be intellectually indolent as well. And with a very small number of exceptions, we do this perfectly.

Our brains use a wide variety of shortcuts in order to reduce the amount of neural activity required to get us through each day. We’re mostly unaware of these shortcuts — and the errors they create — because there wasn’t much need for self-correction over the hundreds of thousands of years our species spent in relatively simple environments containing relatively predictable challenges.

Many studies have shown just how erroneous our notions of reality are; one of my favorites comes from a few years ago. People were recruited to take part in a psychological study being conducted on the third floor of a university faculty building. Each test subject arrived individually and was shown to the elevator that would take them to the study room. In the elevator they encountered an academic who had an unruly pile of books and papers cradled in one…

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Allan Milne Lees

Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.