Still, we take the pic of the vine snake and paste it on our blog as the reason we came to the rainforest. Little do we know, as the friendly waiter serves us a cold glass of papaya juice the next morning, that we came to the rainforest not to witness the fullness of life, but rather to see, to rave over, the consequences of death.
It is also true that animals are frequently altruistic, loving, and maybe even endowed with a basic sense of right and wrong. But none of these qualities per se matters when you boil existence to its essence. In fact, it all adds up to one huge red herring. Animals cooperate for the sole reason that they are trying to avoid being killed while enhancing their own ability to kill. So ubiquitous is the law of the jungle that many species will even consume members of their own tribe. There is no censure or praise under this indifferent canopy. The fittest thereby survive and, as a result, the selection is as natural as it is amoral.