Where Does Personality Come From? You Were Made For A Mission

[adsense float=’left’]There is abundant evidence in the animal kingdom that there is a purpose for the way we behave.

One such piece of evidence is found in ants. If you study ants, you find that they are arranged in castes. Each castes serves to help the colony. You have the Queen that lays the eggs, the drones that fertilize the Queen, and the worker caste which is broken down into: foragers, soldiers, and caretakers.

Brains and Brawn

Soldier ants (right) are bigger than their forager-ant sisters, even though genetically, they are identical. Photo Credit: Brittany Enzmann, Arizona State University

The worker castes are physically and behaviorally different from each other, even though genetically they are identical. The soldier ants are bigger and brawny compared to the other worker ants. And the worker ants appear to be brainier, as they forage and communicate to each other as they search for food.

How are they so different, but genetically the same? The reason, according to a University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine study, has to do with epigentics; how regulation ‘above’ genes, plays a role in establishing these dramatic differences in a whole organism.

“To understand how caste differences arise, the team examined the role of modifications of histones, which are protein complexes around which DNA strands are wrapped in a cell’s nucleus. Histones can be altered by the addition of small chemical groups, which affect the expression of genes. Therefore, specific histone modifications can create dramatic differences between genetically similar individuals, such as the physical and behavioral differences between ant castes.”

In humans, this explains why physically we are taller now than we were a few generations ago. Essentially, there were chemical changes in the food our ancestors ate, that caused some genes to turn on, allowing humans to grow physically taller. Should those chemical proteins disappear from the food supply, our descendants would most likely shrink down to a smaller size. We are not “evolving” to be taller, as genetically we are still identical to our grandparents and great-grandparents. It also explains why cancer is more apparent today, as we know there are certain chemicals that are know to trigger cancers.

You’re Made For A Mission

What is still not known scientifically, is why or how nature knows to create soldier ants. And, just as importantly, how many soldiers to produce. Because without them, the colony is in jeopardy.

[adsense float=’left’]What this means for humanity, is that you were most likely made for a specific caste. I know you don’t like that word “caste”, since it has connotations that some people are more important than others. That is not true, as everyone is important. But in order for our colony (tribes, nations) to survive wars, we each have a specific mission that we were designed for. We’re more like an army, which has four sections: Warriors, Logistical support, Strategists, and care-givers (who I call Morale Officers).

We need each other to survive, just as the ants need its caste system to survive.

If you’d like to learn more about the evidence for the four personality types, click here.

Epigenetics and Carl Jung’s theories

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