Octopus opening a container with a screw cap
“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men.”
Can an octopus be as smart as a dolphin or even a human? The octopus is thought by those who believe in evolution to be an early, primitive form of life. They certainly look primitive, but that’s a subjective opinion based upon the many imaginative illustrations we have all seen in books and films. And we might also say that they do not appear to be very intelligent, but again, do we really know for sure?
In some recent work, researchers had two tanks of octopi and placed a red ball in one and a white ball in the other. The octopi in each tank were trained to attack the balls in their tank. They then placed another tank of untrained octopi close by where they could watch their trained companions. A red and a white ball were then dropped into their tank and, sure enough, those who had watched a red ball being attacked did the same thing but ignored the white ball. Not only did the untrained octopi attack the same color they had watched being attacked, but they learned the lesson much faster than the first group.
This discovery about the intelligence of the octopus is even more surprising because they’re not social creatures. Social vertebrates tend to appear more intelligent because they learn from one another. In a similar way, the Creator of this universe became a human being in the person of Jesus Christ so that we could learn by watching and listening to Him.
Notes: M. Stron. “In the lab, it’s octopus see, octopus do.” Science News, Vol. 141, p.262.
Photo: Courtesy of Matthias Kabel. Licensed under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2.
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