Wednesday, April 26, 2006


I am always looking for a job that has a big picture, a greater goal that transcends the everyday and weaves a larger cloth. Also, I have always wanted a job where the greater goal is something that I believe in.

Tonight I was talking to my brother about how I am so happy that I do not have clients to deal with, that most of my problems now are technical issues in the lab and how liberating that is. But as I was speaking I realized that even though I do not deal directly with people as much, it is still humans that I am ultimately aiming to please.

Whatever contribution I have to this research and whatever contribution this research ultimately has to the world of all focused on humans. Yes we are looking at other closely related species for clues, but they are only valuable to us because they are so genetically similar to Homo sapiens. So it is not that we have some general conservation angle, because we dont.

Then i thought..maybe a larger goal can have merit even though it is anthropocentric...why not?

I always think this about our place in this world: We are apes, just like Gorillas, Chimps, Orangutans, Bonobos and Gibbons. But we are able to acknowledge a hierarchy of these apes and their varying levels of sophistication so to speak. So cant we safely say we have won the ape contest, we are just smarter and better suited to our environment so then we are free to do to it whatever we wish. We would never stop an Orangutan from breaking tree branches to make a nest because it is harmful to the environment, we would just see it as part of the way that they survive. So this insane logic always brings me to the thought that maybe the way we use our environment is not really wrong or harmful, it is just what we think we need to do to survive...and isnt that what every organism is doing?

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