Day 55

Today I learned about an interesting puzzle in the field of biology: Scientists have wondered why sexual reproduction persists among the human species, rather than asexual reproduction. Hypothetically, if people who were extremely well-adapted to their environment were able to reproduce asexually, then they could pass on 100% of their super-genes to their offspring. This option seems like it would lead to greater success of our species. Instead, offspring can only be 50% made of those super-genes (because the remaining 50% is from the other parent, who may not be so well-adapted), implying a cost associated with sexual reproduction. However, this article offers an explanation for why our species may benefit from reproducing with partners.

Today I meditated for 20 minutes. Five of those minutes I spent laughing, initially because of something said in this meditation, but then at myself for laughing by myself, and then at the sound of my laugh, which I had never really listened to before.

Today I acted kindly by sneaking into my friend’s house while she was writing an exam and decorating her room with streamers and balloons as a birthday surprise. When she got home, her initial response was, “Omg!!!!! You are the most amazing friend!!!! I am speechless!!!” …so I think it was a success.

(P.S. Although I first and foremost believe that compassion/kindness are intrinsically valuable, an end in itself, and a philosophy for living, I have to say that they additionally serve as a means to part of my own joy (which I consider an added bonus). It is SO MUCH FUN to plan and carry out crazy activities like today’s or Day 50’s or Day 40’s or Day 12’s, and I get gleeful knowing that others feel happy from them too.)

“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”

-Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama



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