we don't need to change how we do conservation, we need to change why we do it

Old Buddha Meets Young Buddha, Part-3: When we See the Difference, our World Changes

The Whole of Essay Nineteen in Darwin, Dogen, and the Extremophile Choice. 

It is vain to do with more what can be done with fewer. —William of Ockham [1]

The flexible behaviour of higher animals can’t be trusted to maintain resource partitions; only innate structure can. Thus ecological stability requires not only that inapposite curiosity (i.e. a predisposition to wasteful experimentation) be de-selected, it also requires adaptive learned behaviours to be supported at every opportunity by the natural selection of more reliable genetic programs. In undisturbed ecosystems the evolution of genetic support for useful, easily acquired habits (a pathway known as phenotypic accommodation [2]) eventually makes behavioural flexibility redundant as well as a liability. And whenever disturbed ecosystems return to stability, this preference should resume—so that eventually behaviours conform once again to the natural limitations of body forms that come with the solid lifetime guarantee of an irreversible genotype. [3]


1. Kneale, William and Martha. 1962. The Development of Logic. London: Oxford University Press. p. 243. (Ockham only cited an extant version of “the razor”.)

2. Stout, Dietrich. Apr. 2016. Tales of a Stone Age Neuroscientist. Scientific American, vol. 314, no. 4, p. 34.

3. Also see: https://www.extremophilechoice.com/2022/05/23/old-buddha-meets-young-buddha-part-one-a-contract-broken/

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