Re: marriage pair bonding

Date: Fri Nov 10 2000 - 22:19:43 MST

In a message dated 11/10/00 7:08:03 PM Central Standard Time, writes:
> On Fri, 10 Nov 2000 wrote:
> + \\In a message dated 11/10/00 2:56:55 PM Central Standard Time,
> + \\ writes:
> + \\
> + \\> > --J. R. writes:
> + \\> > Yes, marriage does seem to lack extropic value.
> + \\> >
> + \\> Two extropic brains are better than one.
> + \\> G~
> + \\
> + \\
> + \\Agreed. There are some great synergies that come out of long-term
> + \\pair-bonding -- but it takes a LOT of work for most people!
> can someone please model this atomically or macromolecularly.
> specifically, the 'lot of work' portion. what is it?

I don't know what "model this atomically or macromolecularly" means, but I do
know a little bit about what it means to invest a "lot of work" in a
relationship to make it worthwhile over the long run (Anthea and I celebrated
20 years together last Spring). The chance is pretty slim that two systems
as complex as human beings are can maintain a healthy intimate relationship
for long periods of time without conscious effort at adjustment and
synchronization. In order to reap the rewards that come from intimate
involvement with another human being over a long period of time, one has to
invest time and energy into the process of preserving positive core values in
that relationship. It takes communication, respect and compromise on an
on-going, conscious basis.

Without attention to these relationship-maintenance tasks, two (or more)
people will inevitably drift apart. The Newtonian analogy is fairly apt: A
healthy relationship is a dynamic balance of attractive and centrifugal
forces. However, no relationship is a simple "two body" problem and one must
input more or less delta-v from time to time to stay in a mutually beneficial
orbit. This requires energy inputs into the system. Because of this,
couples with healthy relationships develop good habits of periodic
"relationship tune-ups".

As we live longer and longer and become more and more complex, these kinds of
activities will have to evolve and grow. However I suspect that there's a
very good chance that the pair-bond will continue to be the fundamental
social relationship for humans and their progeny. This belief arises from
the simple arithmetic of relationships and networks: The complexity of
relationship-maintenance rises geometrically with the number of participants.
 I assume that "costs", in the broadest sense of the word, will also rise
with an increase in the number of members of an intimate relationship,
although possibly not as steeply as complexity. Since the benefits of
intimate relationships will also likely increase with increases in
complexity, it seems likely that sentient entities, whether human or
posthuman, will continue to be will to invest resources into gaining those
benefits. Which is a complex and abstract way of saying that love will
persist in a posthuman future.

       Greg Burch <>----<>
      Attorney ::: Vice President, Extropy Institute ::: Wilderness Guide -or-
                                           ICQ # 61112550
        "We never stop investigating. We are never satisfied that we know
        enough to get by. Every question we answer leads on to another
       question. This has become the greatest survival trick of our species."
                                          -- Desmond Morris

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