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Thread: 100 Monkeys

  1. #1
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    The 100th Monkey
    A story about social change.
    by Ken Keyes. Jr.



    The Japanese monkey, Macaca Fuscata had been observed in the wild for a period of over 30 years. In 1952, on the island of Koshima. scientists were providing monkeys with sweet potatoes dropped in the sand. The monkey liked the taste of the raw sweet potatoes, but they found the dirt unpleasant. An l8 month old female named Imo found she could solve the problem by washing the potatoes in a nearby stream. She taught this trick to her mother. Her playmate also learned this new way and they taught their mothers too.



    This cultural innovation was gradually picked up by various monkeys before the eyes of the scientists. Between 1952 and 1958 all the young monkeys learned to wash the sandy sweet potatoes to make them more palatable. Only the adults who imitated their children learned this social improvement. Other adults kept eating the dirty sweet potatoes.



    Then something startling took place. In the Autumn of 1958, a certain number of Koshima monkeys were washing sweet potatoes - the exact number is not known. Let us suppose that when the sun rose one morning there were 99 monkeys on Koshima Island who had learned to wash their sweet potatoes. Let's further suppose that later that morning, the hundredth monkey learned to wash potatoes.



    THEN IT HAPPENED! By that evening almost everyone in the tribe was washing sweet potatoes before eating them. The added energy of this hundredth monkey somehow created an ideological breakthrough!



    But notice: A most surprising thing observed by these scientists was that the habit of washing sweet potatoes then transmitted silently over the sea... Colonies of monkeys on other islands and the mainland troop of monkeys at Takasakiyama began washing their sweet potatoes. Thus, when a certain critical number achieves an awareness, this new awareness may be communicated from mind to mind.



    Although the exact number may vary, this Hundredth Monkey Phenomenon means that when only a limited number of people know of a new way, it may remain the conscious property of these people.

    There is a point at which if only one more person tunes in to a new awareness, a field is strengthened so that this awareness is picked up by almost everyone.


    There's a lot more to this, if anyone is interested I'll post more later.



  2. The Drawing Room   -   #2
    Snee's Avatar Error xɐʇuʎs BT Rep: +1
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    I getting a bit tired but this certainly looks interesting.

    Would you happen to have an online source?

    Are they suggesting something along the lines of telepathy/collective unconscious here? (or am I too tired to appropriatedly comprehend the text)

  3. The Drawing Room   -   #3
    TheDave's Avatar n00b
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    im not quite sure i understand is it about social skills or telepathy?

    neway its got monkeys so it rocks

  4. The Drawing Room   -   #4
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    You can Google a lot of info on this, be prepared for a counter claim too, this is not accepted science by all. The probable leader in the field is Rupert Sheldrake, again, you can Google a lot of info on him too.

    Here is one to set the scene, there are many more. When I get time, I will look deeper into what is available on the net.

    Rupert Sheldrake.



  5. The Drawing Room   -   #5
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    Appreciated.

    Mr Sheldrake is not universally popular I notice, still the theory/ies are interesting.

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  7. The Drawing Room   -   #7
    Rat Faced's Avatar Broken
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    The Collective Unconscious has been expounded for centuries in some cultures, and more recently has been accepted by some westerners...

    The trouble is that it would be hard to prove/disprove, although there is evidence to support both viewpoints.

    Like most things that are "supernatural"..mainstream science will scoff and laugh. just like they did to just about every "Original" thinker, including those later proven to be right.

    Most "Scientists", in their own ways, are as close minded as any religious fanatic....

    An It Harm None, Do What You Will

  8. The Drawing Room   -   #8
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    I too like sweet potatoes... Although I prefer my potatoes unwashed

  9. The Drawing Room   -   #9
    Originally posted by Rat Faced@12 November 2003 - 01:20


    Most "Scientists", in their own ways, are as close minded as any religious fanatic....
    There is no data to support such a sweeping statement. Your hypothesis is untenable. Case closed.


    I was just wondering how monkeys could "communicate" to the others what they are doing. Are they sending out the literal message "clean potatoes taste good" or is the transmission something more innate so that "language" is not an issue.

    Imagine men on one island who speak English washing potatoes and suddenly the Chinese speaking inhabitants of an adjacent island, who have no visual or auditory communication with them, starting doing the same.

    I can understand how people who have different languages can communicate via mimicry and hand gestures, but if both of these tools are removed, what is the nature of the communication?
    Aren't we in the trust tree, thingey?

  10. The Drawing Room   -   #10
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    That's a good point Hobbes, how did we communicate before we learned to talk?



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