“Dysfunctional” Adaptive Response

 For want of a nicer (i.e. more accurate) way of putting it.

  • Social interaction has evolved from selection events, and historically the mechanism of selection has likely involved much sorting into life and death categories.

Just as the human spine is used to walk on two feet but developed from, and remains closely related to a design for mobility on four limbs, so to do modern social interactions remain closely related to “primitive” ones.

For this reason, it should be no surprise that conflicted social interactions induce such strong emotions, since they are very closely associated to the fear, (and in cases such as bullying, the threat) of death.

That we are all aspects of one reality aside, this is another very good reason why people should be careful in how they treat one another.

That which is thought of as “dysfunctional” behavior may in fact be the highly functional response to the given occurrence of environmental fluctuation, which may for example apply strong adaptive pressures in mutually exclusive directions, such as “give me love” and “stay away from me”.

Alternatively, it may be the product of attempts to relate to entirely emergent sets of environmental conditions, leading intermittently to the strategy of last resort: panic.

As with anything, the nature of the adaptive response elicited is closely linked in a system of relationship with the nature of the environmental fluctuation (i.e the society) with which it is interacting.

2013 Peter Sillifant

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