I'm sad to say that it took all these millennia until finally an intelligent,
and a honest human being, a scientist, finally used the word "personality" in
a formal scientific paper to describe a fellow animal being.
Not until 1993 did the idea of personality in individuals of other species
As any old cowpoke or herdsman, as any farmer's wife who keeps chickens,
or as any person who's ever had a pet can tell you - all individuals
of all species, from flies to blue whales - have personalities, emotions,
moods, traits, interests, hobbies, specialties, and ideas just like us.
This is from this www.nytimes.com/2006/01/22/magazine/22animal.html
article from the New York Times, on octopi, those lovely, talented, and extremely adept, dextrous and intelligent mult-armed guys of the deep -
Anderson and Mather's resulting 1993 paper in the
Journal of Comparative Psychology, entitled
"Personalities of Octopuses," was not only the first-ever documentation of personality in invertebrates. It was the first time in anyone's memory that the term "personality" had been applied to a nonhuman in a major psychology journal.
Of course, any of us who have spent time in the company of octopi, as I was lucky enough to do as a small child, knows, octopuses are adorable, intelligent, lively, interested, and curiously miraculous beings -
I lived very near a zoo, and was privileged to be able to ride my bike over
every day of the week and to make pals with numerous of the tenants, including
one gigantic octopus, there, who educated me mightily on the personalities
and thoughts and loves of many different individuals of different species.
The octopus has been spoken of as alien, and yet, what are we?
A spindly collection of stringy bones and rubbery connectives, suspended here
and there by various building materials, and holding up an unwieldy round
object with staring balls and an ever-flapping lower piece that emits sounds
formed lower down inside a tube - the same tube that allows food to
be shoved in and winds around and then lets it out the other end.
Any grandious thoughts about how lofty we are are dispelled when we really
look at ourselves as soft contraptions or as something built by leggo toys.
The fact that we evolved to do different things on land - actually in our case, in trees - and that octopuses evolved perfectly for their own realm, still o nly makes a few variations o n the simple design - body, eyes, mouth, breathing apparatus, tube to feed and defecate from, various appendages to move about with, and there you have it, topped off with bloodstream and little ways to monitor pressure and other systems operational adjustments.
Look at an octopus, eye to eye, and open your mind and your heart -
feel what it's like to be him or her, and focus o n the similarities
and forget about the differences - they're minor.
Appreciate the lovely octopuses and enjoy learning about them at these links
Save Tree Octopuses
Octopuses Are Very Intelligent