Alien Life part 6
How important is an interpose-able thumb anyway
This is another case where I believe we, as a species fall back into the comfort of conceit. We have thumbs, we can grab things, and therefore the interpose-able thumb is necessary to build a society. Granted an organism with absolutely no ability to manipulate its environment might become hyper intelligent, but it wouldn’t be able to do anything with that ability. I do not believe, however, that the human thumb is solely responsible for our great advancements in civilization.
I believe that all that is required is for a species to have the following abilities:
- To think, and cooperate with others.
- To perceive its environment, in whatever way it can.
- To alter or change that environment, through whatever means it can
We communicate with others, and cooperate with each other, even if involuntarily (such as slavery).
We can hear, see, feel, smell, and taste our environment. Some fish sense electrical impulses through their skin, other creatures use sonar.
We use our hands with thumbs to manipulate our environment, an now we can leave our own world, and remake it to our desires (or against it through carelessness). Even ants make cities, higher animals dig burrows.
It is not necessary to have human traits to develop a civilization. I think, however, that civilizations built on a different trinity of abilities would by necessity be shaped by them. If a creature’s highest developed sense is sonar then shape form and structure would be more important than color.
Think about it. What are your thoughts?