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Richard Dawkins
Discussion of his work, ideas and activities
Rereading The Extended Phenotype 
16th-Jun-2011 04:34 pm

Now I re-read the second time Richard's The Extended phenotype and some of my thoughts that arise in the course of the reading, I would like to share.

The emergence of new behavioral patterns

Richard believes that new behavior patterns (due to random genetic mutations, of course) emerge as if from nothing. I have nothing against random genetic mutation, but whether it be right to think that it creates something from nothing? Or it simply restricts the already existing behavior pattern?

Imagine that a previously healthy person suddenly fell ill with a neurosis or adopted some religion (what is roughly the same thing), and because of that, he has a ritual ... For example, do not eat pork or go to work only on a strictly defined route. What we are seeing in this case: the emergence of a new pattern or restriction of the old (context)?

I am inclined to think that we are dealing with the restriction of the original context. But in this case, what we have on the level of genes? A new genetic mutation, which influenced the phenotype indicates that started making of a new protein. What is this: the emergence of a new out of nothing or a restriction of the original context - the operation of a chemical machine (organism)?

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