The Scientific Portal of Behavior, Body Language and Nonverbal Communication#

Search for

June 30, 2011

Secret behind imitation

Don’t we imitate or copy each others at all? Let’s ask this question to ourselves. A lot of times, we hear typical sentence that an individual makes - “If I couldn’t match pace and manners of world or people around me, I would be left behind or rejected.” Same sentence may repeatedly boom in many heads. Fear of lagging behind or living at our own risk has been hard coded in our unconscious minds. How imitation came into existence?
Imitation makes every person look alike.
Imitating is to perform, maneuver, behave or adapt to situations like most others do. That’s it, folks! We have defined it so simply. But it’s not over yet. Next question comes that why imitation became valid and how it programmed in our genes. Hard to believe but imitation has to do with survival.

Today, living is quite easy as compared to what it was thousands and millions years back. Our ancestors used to leave in jungles; in dramatic and dangerous conditions. Their entire life was surrounded by fiercest predators lurking behind trees or tall grass. Also there were rival tribes fitting and killing over region, reproduction and resources. In a result, living alone was itself a risk to life.

We often watch a terrifying scene of a predator hunting down a prey to eat on scientific television channels. Predator like lion chases a stag, grabs and kills it to death. Despite of power, speed and tactics; almost all predators can concentrate on just single prey at a time and not the whole herd.

Predators choose a prey that stays alone (separated from herd) appearing quite different, easy to hunt and most weak. On the other hand, coming together and appearing - acting like each other multiply chances of living. Preys adapt dramatic strategy that defends them against predators.

They stand together, stay very close to each other, move at same speed, move in same direction, make loud noise together, synchronize their body movements and make same kind of gestures or expressions. Ultimately, a whole group appears like just one big and powerful prey.
Confused, baffled, overpowered and visually overwhelmed predator can only think about finding another solitary, small and weak prey elsewhere rather than wasting time and energy to hunt nothing. Adapting similar body colors, patterns and ornaments is core part of same strategy.

For moving ahead with fewer problems and achieving undoables, our ancestors had to work together and imitate each other as much as possible. They had to talk in same language - dialect, adapt same manners - methods, build houses or paint - decorate bodies alike, use same weapons - tools, share resources - ideas, eat - dance together, smell and create sounds alike. All these things gave them strength to stand against their rival tribes also.

'Uniformal' imitation
Amazingly, human race is the most imitating species in the vibrant world of creatures. One initiates something and others follow, mimic or imitate the same.

Related Articles:

1) Why we copy each other's body language? 2) Dominance 3) Facial Feedback: World smiles with you!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please post your valuable comment here.