Естественен ли альтруизм?

Трудно представить, что кто-то может считать великодушие проблемой, но Чарльз Дарвин считал. Маленькие рабочие пчелы, жертвующие собственной жизнью, чтобы защитить свой улей – наивысший пример великодушия среди животных – не давали Дарвину покоя.

Если идеи Дарвина относительно эволюции и естественного отбора были правильными (а они, конечно, были и остаются правильными), то такой альтруизм должен был встречаться в природе чрезвычайно редко. Если повышение темпов репродуктивности является конечной целью эволюции путем естественного отбора, то альтруисты должны были исчезнуть – и быстро. Но они не исчезают, и Дарвин был так озадачен этим, что говорил об альтруизме как о проблеме, которая могла оказаться фатальной для всей его теории эволюции.

Затем решение этой сложной головоломки свалилось на Дарвина, как тонна кирпичей. Рабочие пчелы помогали не просто каким-то пчелам; они защищали собственный улей. А в их улье находились особые индивидуумы - родственники по крови.

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