The Origin of Laughter | The Institute for Creation Research
 
The Origin of Laughter

Since the Scriptures teach that "a merry heart doeth good like a medicine" (Proverbs 17:22), consider: Five out of four people have trouble with fractions. The thing about retired gardeners is they just don't get around mulch anymore. Grapes don't say anything when stepped on — they just let out a little whine. The trouble with most political jokes is — they usually get elected. Clones are people two. If you didn't at least smile at some of the above — please contact your nearest health care provider.

Secular attempts to devise a broad evolutionary explanation of laughter have failed. Nevertheless, evolutionary psychology (a combination of evolution and cognitive psychology) continues in its attempt to corrupt what God has given us by putting a secular spin on laughter's origin. Evolutionists have tried to shoe-horn laughter into our alleged primate ancestry saying it comes "from deep within our biologic being — grunts and cackles from our animal unconscious."1 Oh, please! Two other researchers — Owren and Bachorowski — suggest that:

... human laughter evolved as a way to form alliances. First came the smile, which communicated a positive disposition to other individuals. Over time, however, smiles became increasingly easy to fake, so a more complex signal was needed. That is where laughter came in.2

Provine stated:

Breathy, panting laughter is probably the primal form that dates back to the common ancestor of all great apes and people. Human beings evolved their characteristic laughter after branching from an ancestor in common with chimpanzees ... 3

"Like typical primate calls, for example, laughter is evidently a species-wide 'hard-wired' behavior."4 Instead, creation scientists see this "hard-wired behavior" as simply the work of the all-wise Creator, blessing us with the ability to laugh. In another report on laughter's origin, evolutionary researchers described infant humans and bonobos (pygmy chimpanzees) displaying similar facial gestures and sounds known as a relaxed open-mouth display.5 This is hardly surprising, and frequently occurs among southern California adults when viewing the latest gasoline prices.

These are all nothing more than secular "just-so" stories, natural man's attempt to explain God-given expressions of mirth. And when all the guffaws and chuckling stops, evolutionists admit that "we know little about laughter itself" and "laughter research is still in its infancy."6

References

1. Provine, R. L., as quoted by Jeanie Lerche Davis in "Why Do We Laugh?" See the following: http://my.webmd.com/content/Article/53/6
1405.htm

2. Harris, L. http://exploration.vanderbilt.edu/news/n
ews_laughter.htm

3. Provine, R. L., "Laughter," American Scientist (vol. 84, Jan./Feb. 1996), p. 40.
4. Owren, M. J. & Bachorowski, J. "Reconsidering the Evolution of Nonlinguistic Communication,"
    J. of Nonverbal Behavior 27(3) 2003 p. 187.
5. Beale, R., http://dsc.discovery.com/news/afp/200310
06/laughter_print.html

6. Provine, R. L., p. 45

Cite this article: Sherwin, F. 2004. The Origin of Laughter. Acts & Facts. 33 (7).

The Latest
NEWS
"100-Million-Year-Old" Bacteria?
Researchers from the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology have recovered what they claim are 100-million-year-old microbes. Drilling 74.5...

NEWS
Origin of Tectonic Plates Best Explained by the Flood
A new study published in Nature Communications claims to have figured out how the tectonic plates may have originated.1 It’s been over...

NEWS
Give Today and Support Biblical Creation Ministry
North Texas Giving Day is here once again! Will you help us reach the next generation? Your generosity will empower ICR and our Dallas Museum—the...

NEWS
Mammalian Brains Prove Evolutionary Disconnect
The evolutionary model of brain development predicted that the complexity of neural connectivity should have increased as brains became larger and the...

NEWS
North Texas Giving Day Next Week!
North Texas Giving Day is almost here! Will you help us reach the next generation? Your generosity will empower ICR and the ICR Discovery Center for Science...

NEWS
Celebrating One Year at the ICR Discovery Center
Thank you to all who joined us for the ICR Discovery Center for Science & Earth History’s First Anniversary Celebration! ICR staff enjoyed meeting...

NEWS
New Evidence Hurts Feathered Dinosaur Theory
Is a dinosaur still a dinosaur if it has flight feathers? A new study points to some fascinating evidence that contradicts the idea of feathered dinosaurs...

NEWS
New Planetarium Show: Exploring Deep Space
The ICR Discovery Center for Science & Earth History is celebrating its first anniversary since the Grand Opening on September 2, 2019. To commemorate...

NEWS
Inside September 2020 Acts & Facts
What's the story behind ICR's new President? What milestone are we celebrating this month at the ICR Discovery Center? How do comets affirm...

NEWS
Sunflower Heliotropism: August Sunlight for Making Tons of Seeds
August is an important month for sunflowers—those gigantic, bright-yellow flowers with brownish, round seed heads bordered by radiating yellow ligules...