The Selfish Gene

My One Thing:

Our bodies at the gene level are selfish for sure. However, we still have control over this and we have the ability to be altruistic.

Other Key Concepts

  • p3 Our genes are selfish, but we need not obey
  • p11 Gene is fundamental unit of selection
  • p12 Survival of the fittest=survival of the stable (stable=last long enough to procreate)
  • p20 Genes=replicators=us
  • p21 DNA=replicator molecules- all made of them
  • p45 Evolution= increase of some and decrease of other genes in the pool
  • p46 Plants and animals and all of their sub-types are specialized gene machines
  • p65 Genes try to deceive other genes
  • p66 One survival machines sees another survival machine as in the way
  • p87 Gene interactions go on within individual bodies
  • p88 Genes may help replicate genes in other bodies similar to themselves
  • p108 Parental care=kin selection
  • p109 Balance caring and bearing of kin
  • p122 Parents maximize # of kids to survive
  • p123 Favorite kids?
  • p139 Kids deceive for survival
  • p140 Each parent has 50% invested in kid and wants that 50% to keep on keepin on
  • p165 Females compete for males
  • p166 Reciprocal altruism=you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours
  • p188 $=delayed reciprocal altruism
  • p189 We all form cultures (that evolve together)
  • p201 we can fight our selfish replicators
  • Evolutionary Stable Strategy- strategy when adopted by population in given environment (culture) change is rare except for natural selection
  • p234 Tension of individual gene and individual body
  • p253 “an animal’s behavior tends to maximize the survival of the genes ‘for’ that behavior, whether or not those genes happen to be in the body of the particular animal performing it.”
  • p266 Only replicators, not individual bodies, need to exist for life to arise

How to apply

Why do we all work together?

Our genes want the same things at a cultural level that has drawn us together. Enjoy time with those you are around.

Why do people send us patients?

Keep helping people and advance our culture.

My review

You are what you are and what you will become for a reason. You have genes that all of different agendas. They can’t kill you or they all die, but they too know that only 50% are moving on. The stronger is what will make you do the things you do…eat the food you eat, work where you work, find the spouse or not, have the kids or not, live where you live, love and befriend who you do, read the books you read, move how you move, etc. Overall another great read that you will enjoy to see what makes us, US!

If you liked this book, read…


Autobiography of a Yogi