What am I?


Prompt:

Are humans animals? Too often we think of ourselves as people, thereby neglecting our animalistic nature. In at least 200 words, explain how your daily life demonstrates that you are an animal.

Response:

I am but a human being: a species of animal and a member of the animal kingdom. I wake up, look in the mirror, and see the outcome of generation after generation of ancestors who got enough to eat and successfully reproduced. I do things throughout the day to increase my own odds of survival and reproduction. Hunger sets in as I scavenge for food. Like other heterotrophs, I need to eat for energy and nutrition. Eventually, I have to go to school, a social structure where other sociable animals can learn and interact. I am sometimes faced with hassles (e.g., peer pressures and grades) and stressors (e.g., accidents and the loss of loved ones), but my adaptive abilities will help get me through. In counteraction, my genetic drive of pursuing pleasure encourages me to seek experiences for the release of chemicals like dopamine or serotonin to interact with mood-regulating centers in my brain. Sensory neurons allow me to feel the warmth of the sun on my skin. Other parts of my nervous system emit a rush of adrenaline as I run. Eventually, my innate desires to avoid pain and conserve energy take over as I seek shelter. It's time to rest, repair, and recharge as I close my eyes and drift off to sleep.
Word Count: 215

References and For More Information


Lisle, D. J., & Goldhamer, A. (2006). The Pleasure Trap: Mastering the Hidden Force that Undermines Health & Happiness. Summertown, TN: Book Publishing Company.

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