Re: Will there be time to Relax?
Sat, 6 Nov 1999 19:41:18 EST

In a message dated 99-11-03 10:30:04 EST, writes:

> I don't think we can answer this question well until we better understand
> the evolutionary *function* of leisure. Leisure was something we evolved
> like, and I don't buy the "conserve energy while waiting for something to
> happen" theory of leisure. Actual leisure is much more active than this.
> So it must have had a more active function in our ancestor's lives.
> My current theory is that leisure is mainly about "bonding." By spending
> time with our social allies, we show that it is they who are our allies.
> Of course this isn't our conscious motivation; it doesn't have to be.
> I also hypothesize that social allies were relatively more valuable in
> times of plenty, giving us an evolved tendency to spend more time in
> leisure as we get richer.

I do not get this at all -- it seems that bonds of social trust would have been more valuable in times of scarcity. I'd appreciate a brief explanation of this idea.

> So will the people who dominate the future be those who follow their
> evolutionary tendency to spend lots of time in leisure, or those who
> resist it to spend less time? Well, according to my theory that depends
> on the actual value of social bonding today relative to what we evolved
> to expect it to be. And damned if I know the answer to this.

Hmm -- you know, I interpreted this question to be more about "fun" than "idleness". Maybe we read "leisure" differently . . .

      Greg Burch     <>----<>
      Attorney  :::  Vice President, Extropy Institute  :::  Wilderness Guide   -or-
                         "Civilization is protest against nature; 
                  progress requires us to take control of evolution."
                                           Thomas Huxley