Cognitive Evolution and Its Modes
(1)Homo Sapiens is a rational animal, characterized as such by the fact that much of what people think and do proceeds under the formative guidance of intelligence. Our possession and use of intelligence can and should be understood on evolutionary principles, for intelligence constitutes our particular "competitive advantage" in the evolutionary scheme of things. (2) But while biological evolution accounts for our possession of intelligence, explaining the way in which we actually use it largely requires a rather different evolutionary approach, one that addresses the development of thought-procedures rather than that of thought-mechanisms as such. The two domains involve radically different modes of evolutionary process, the one "blind," and the other "teleological."
of our Species
The ancients saw man as "the rational animal" (zoōn logon echōn), set apart from the world's other creatures by the capacity for speech and deliberation. Following the precedent of Greek philosophy, Western thinkers have generally deemed the deliberate use of knowledge for the guidance of our actions to be at once the glory and the duty of homo sapiens.
Humans have evolved within nature to fill the ecological niche of an intelligent being. This human intelligence of ours is the product of a prolonged process of biological evolution.