December 1, 2012 by NowhereButPop
I just found out earlier today that humans don’t have the most amount of chromosomes out of all living creatures. Hell, shrimp have about twice as many as us. I figured that since humans are the most advanced creatures on Earth, having the most chromosomes would have something to do with that. Regardless I think it’s safe to say that however you look at it, from a religious, scientific, evolutionary, social, or philosophical sense, mankind is the pinnacle of creation. We are the zenith of life on Earth.
To me, that is an absurdly powerful thought to process; there is nothing else on this planet like us. There has not been another organism that has accomplished as much as us before we came along, and there is also (obviously) no other organism that is on a concurrent path as us. It’s interesting to note that the sky is filled with birds, mammals, and insects, the sea is filled with fish, mammals, and reptiles, but our niche is one solely unique to humanity. Far and away we are much different than any other creature on the planet. Whatever marginal difference there is in DNA between people and chimps, it pales in comparison to capacity for though process and mental ability of conceptions. The same applies for other intelligent animals such as dolphins, elephants, or crows. None of these animals have the capacity for ethics, progress, ideals, commitment or the beyond. A chimp can’t tell you where he sees himself in five years; a dolphin can’t express the concept of more, and an elephant can’t tell you what he believes in or what morals he holds because he has none. It would appear then that rationality is absolute. Nothing is partially rational.
When characterizing the intellectual (sic rational) difference between man and everything else the one thing that typifies it the most is sex. By the by, if you think that merely being smarter than a monkey doesn’t mean enough to bypass a 98% genetic similarity, you clearly haven’t been paying attention. Think about all the things we are capable of both thinking about and doing that no other animal can hold a candle to. Rational capacity, and other intangible differences between man and beast are responsible for everything single thing we’ve done since the Neolithic era. To me that warrants more appreciation and awe of man’s monopolistic supremacy over creation, than fawning over comparisons between us and an animal that hurls its shit at one another for amusement.
Don’t worry, I know I’m off on a tangent, but I will get back to sex, I promise. The monkey comparison got me thinking about the notion of beyond which I touched upon earlier. No other animal has the wherewithal for the beyond, or simple expansion of the self. A flea is content with being a flea; a cat is not able to be anything more than a cat. Man is not held back by these restrictions. Every day we have the capability to say “how can I be better than what I was yesterday”. Now, obviously an individual cannot evolve over the course of their lifetime, but to be able to aspire to being something greater than what we were before is an amazing and unique trait held by man and man alone. That idea of doing better or being better is directly related to the notion of exploring the beyond. As a species we’ve taken to the sea, the sky, even outer space. No other creature has these ambitious and grandiose designs. I think that we sometimes take this for granted, or worse, completely overlook it entirely. It’s our desire to explore avenues not grounded in instinct that has led to the world we currently inhabit. As people, we have comprehension of the beyond, the unknown which has allowed us to overcome seas, continents and pursue areas of academic study that other organism will never be able to.
Like people, dolphins have been known to partake in recreational coitus, which is the realization that sex can exist for purposes beyond reproduction, namely immediate gratification. For most other animals, sex is strictly for procreation, business as usual if you will, just ask any male spider. Holding all else constant if this was the case with humans, where us guys instinctively knew that the first woman we sleep with will not only kill us, but consume us alive, I’d suspect there’d be many more priests in the world.
Unlike those disgusting, stupid, shitty animals, humanity sees sex within the confines of two extremes. Because we don’t instantaneously mate with whomever we find attractive, but instead tend to mate out of love, sex has developed not only a procreative aspect, but also an emotional one as well. So on the one hand, sex is the most intimate and extreme manifestation of romantic love and emotions. It is the connection between two individuals, which if the intent is there can mean in a single word: life. Life is a pretty big fucking deal, so I don’t think it’s crazy to say that the act that creates life is immensely powerful. And again what separates it from other animals is the emotional aspect which we as a rational and reasonable species have attached to it, or maybe it’s instinct for us to do so. If the desire to procreate (which is typically predicated upon feelings of love and commitment) is there, then sex for the sake of creating life is an immensely powerful act.
The other end of the spectrum is the most bestial, animalistic, instinctual aspect of humanity. It represents the lust, urges, and base desires of all animals, in a word: fucking. Not all animals fuck since with animals procreation is the most important thing; people do though. Fucking requires no emotional commitment, or desire for procreation, it is exactly what it is at face value: a beast with two backs.
People can construe sex as two completely opposite values. On the one hand it can mean absolutely nothing, devoid of any and all value save for immediate gratification; but on the other hand it literally means the most important thing on Earth: life. One way to think about it, is that the most important thing to happen to any human being, happened nine months before their birth. That’s kinda a big deal. So how can we give two opposite meanings to the same action?
I believe the answer comes from our agency for realization. In other words, our innate ability to differentiate two otherwise similar circumstances which would allow us to read in between the lines of a given action to discern the true meaning or motivating force behind said action. Furthermore, it’s our ability to attribute meaning and invest ourselves into a particular action that makes sex the great complicator. More often than not it doesn’t mean the exact same to both parties. One person usually perceives it to mean more than does the other person, and this is where complications arise. It comes from the difference in interpreting said activities, which itself is an ability strictly profound onto the human race. As a species, we’ve gone way beyond sex as procreation in the way animals go about it. As we all know, we don’t choose our mates just by their ability to create viable offspring. We’ve also gone beyond purely carnal fucking because of the inherent closeness in human copulation, a huge difference from animal copulation.
But because of our ability to reason, we sometimes go a bit overboard. The most famous question to ever present itself to man, “what is the meaning of life” is an example of us over rationalizing. From a purely physical and biological context, the meaning of life is to: 1) not die, and 2) create healthy and viable offspring. But because of our capacity and inclination towards expanded thoughts and a shift away from animalistic instinct, other just as credible explanations of life have presented themselves. Some include just having fun, being a good person, being closer to God, gaining knowledge, and better oneself. All of these avenues of thought and belief and expression are solely limited to Homo sapiens. But again, many different animals can fly, swim or even express some semblance of basic emotions, but humans are the only ones who can think logically and complexly. The fact that no other animal is our peer while so many animals exist that are similar to one another is astonishing.
Alas, I fear that I’m not saying anything you don’t already know. What I think is absolutely true though is the dichotomy in our perception of sexual contact and our tendency to (whether we know it or not) attribute any further meaning outside of the initial action to it. This is emblematic of humanity being at the zenith of creation, and our dominance over the biosphere. This is how we know we are the pinnacle of all life on Earth; when we can pensively and logically expand on a base animalistic drive into being more than a simple natural action, and then applying different circumstances to the same action. This is but one example that encapsulates our innate prowess of the mind which separates us from any other animal. Homo sapiens are an interesting bunch unlike anything that has existed before us or even during our existence on the planet. I hope we stick around for a while.
 For those keeping track, some fern has the most with 1,440 chromosomes.
 While mating female spiders eat the males and feed the leftovers to their offspring. Males don’t see their life in terms of a scale between chastity and death; they just see it as the natural order of things. Sex is strictly for procreation not pleasure. Had this not been the case, I can’t foresee any males ever wanting to copulate. Stupid, shitty animals.
 I also find it interesting that there is no other creature in the genus Homo.