Intellectual Help Needed

Now in my nineties, I’m cramming the results of my life’s work into a very compact essay. Its working title is “How Human Culture Evolved from Star Stuff; with Some Ideas and Hypotheses”. My intent is to introduce a hard-science underpinning to behavioral science in general, and to cultural anthropology (my field) in particular.
Needless to say, the essay is very multidisciplinary and by no means suitable for publication in an academic journal.
I’m looking for
• challenges (I’ve weathered a few already);
• suggestions for the essay’s improvement in content and exposition;
• ideas for its distribution, to bring it to the attention of potential readers.
I think at least some readers of Free Inquiry will find my essay worthy of their attention. If you’re among them, please email me at []. Include the word “ESSAY” in caps in the subject line. You’ll receive a PDF of the latest draft by return email.
Sincerely, Ted Cloak

That’s a pretty sweeping project. Not sure I can help, but, maybe someone here can.

I have a B.S. in Psychology and secondary degree in English lit. Not sure if I could help much beyond improving the writing. It’s been a while since I worked in Behavioural Sciences though and even then it wasn’t much.

OK, John, thanks for your reply. I’m attaching the PDF here. Let me know if you get it.



(Attachment Star Stuff Draft 8-17-2022.pdf is missing)

Hmm. Never tried attaching a pdf.

Nope, the forum wants only pictures. So if still interested, please send me a direct email msg: Thanks. Ted

In post 3 open the envelope next to arrow @ lausten. PDF will be printable.

on second view, naah… just a copy of the conversation in pdf form

Can you offer a synopsis within this post ?

@ tedcloak

Yes, that is the preferred format. A synopsis will allow for an instant decision if the concept touches on individual areas of interest.

For instance, I am very much interested in the role microtubules play in all Eukaryotic life and their possible contributions to the phenomenon of emergent conscious awareness.

But the Title and a brief description of your motive does not readily allow for any kind of cognitive curiosity.

Just a few quoted passages stating a condensed proposition would be very helpful.
You might be pleasantly surprised by some of the considered responses.

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I’ve tried to do that several times, to no avail. In a way, the essay itself is a synopsis of a book I might have written forty years ago and that I hope somebody will write in the future. The working title plus my statement of intent will have to suffice:

[quote=“tedcloak, post:1, topic:9792”]
“How Human Culture Evolved from Star Stuff; with Some Ideas and Hypotheses”
[/quote]strong text


Can you send a link so that we can download pdf?

Went to your website and saw link to your pdf titled; “Nascent Theory” @

At first glance looked interesting.

I’ve found this:

In Chance and Necessity

(1971), Jacques Monod has successfully

demonstrated, I think, that ontogenesis — the process by which the

ontogeny of an organism occurs — is merely an extension of the process

by which atoms unite into simple molecules and simple molecules unite

into more complex molecules. This is the process of formation of

electron bonds, covalent arid noncovalent; its outcome in each case is

determined by two things: (1) the structures and spatiotemporal relations

of the material structures that went into it, and (2) the mysterious

universal causal force or fundamental principle called Electromagnetism.

My purpose here is to show that all human behaviors and institutions,

too, are determined entirely by (1) entering material structures and

relations and (2) Electromagnetism.

So my first impression is that it makes sense up to the Kerb Cycle being invented, then we start getting into life and cells and organisms and creatures.

Once we get going with life upon a changing Earth, doesn’t it evolve into responding to a changing environment (in every time scale imaginable) the main driver of change in organisms and creatures evolving?

Dang! Thanks a lot! I knew I should re-read Monod and cite him. I extend that to phylogenesis in my 1986 article (q.v.). And I suppose he includes the environment in his list of causes.

There is now a link to the essay at the first page of Thank you.

I am sorry, but Jacques Monod had it wrong when he said :
"The universe is not pregnant with life nor the biosphere with man. … Man at last knows that he is alone in the unfeeling immensity of the universe, out of which he emerged only by chance.

(Jacques Monod - Wikipedia)

Robert Hazen disagrees with Monod and demonstrated that abiogenesis has a very high probability of spontaneously emerging from the biochemistry on an Earth-like planet with a dynamic atmosphere and some basic plentiful minerals and most importantly a large mineral surface area and a large time-span to perform spontaneous chemical reactions.

Hazen estimates that the Earth has performed some 2 trillion, quadrillion, quadrillion, quadrillion chemical experiments in its relatively short 1 billion years from its initial formation.

This is one of the best lectures I have heard, where Hazen gives a short but clear overview of the chemistry of an Earth-like planet at Carnegie Academy of Science.

Start at 12:00 to avoid a lengthy introduction.

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From the point of view of my essay, and this thread, there is no significant difference between Monod and Hazen, so please hear me out; that is, read the essay. You can now download it from

I’d be delighted if you’d read it and ask me questions about it, mriana. You can now download it from my website,

Not a problem. I’ll read it this weekend when I’m off work.

Giving a glance, it is well formatted with citations, so I look forward to reading it.

I just read your essay and I enjoyed it tremendously. I like your easy-to-read narrative that brings attention to the fundamentals without reaching into obscure abstractions.

Actually, here in CFI we have touched on these areas extensively and with a little research, you may find many submissions that touch on this subject.

With your permission I have copied a few passages and should like to post them with some (hopefully) constructive comments. But I’ll wait for your permission.

One definitive identification of what you have termed “macromolecules” may be found in the self-organizing dynamically variable dipolar coil named:

This remarkably versatile nano-scale tubular construct is found in ALL Eukaryotic organisms on earth and fills an incredible variety of data processing functions, including memory storage.

I’ll leave it at that, but have an entire thread devoted to the microtubule and its related filaments that comprise the entire information systems in all of biology,

My thread: Microtubules the seat of Consciousness

Looking forward to a very productive discussion.!!!

Seems to me you’re saying something very similar to a thought I keep trying to share and that I believe is a necessary first step to truly understanding Evolution, or our own body and mind for that matter, namely

Appreciating for Physical Reality ~ Human Mindscape divide

Does this concept I’m trying to highlight resonate with your thoughts?

Chemistry was naturalized when people understood that atoms and molecules are held together and broken apart by the Electromagnetic interaction.

“was naturalized” can you explain what you mean by that, or how you mean that?

Regarding Darwin, you wrote:

No selector entity is required.

I always thought Darwin was enunciating a process and not an entity?

I’ll chew on your essay a bit more, but failing to mention evolution as key to understanding seems to me a big gap.

My perspective,
Great brains perceive things through their enthralling minds, my mind is simpler if deeply curious & introspective, and my life has been more Down to Earth and lived through my body, while observing it through my mind. At this point in my life (67) I have a deep visceral appreciation for being an element in the pageant of Earth’s Evolution. I have an awareness of being an evolved creature who’s lineage goes back way beyond all the generations of fathers before me, back into deep time when my body was more and more foreign and primitive from the wonder I (we) currently possess.
But I also know that their pioneering advances made me possible, their legacy is flowing through my blood and body, and as much a part of me as the eggs I just finished eating, more so.

I believe there’s no way to understand our consciousness or our human condition without thoroughly absorbing the lessons Evolution has to teach, and unfortunately Evolution is given a lot of lip service, but seldom does it seem to really soak into the self-absorbed human consciousness.