In an insightful episode of Life Noggin, narrator Pat Graziosi posited the question, “What If You’re Born Without Sympathy & Empathy?“, while explaining that these qualities evolved within humans so they could get along well within society.
…humans gained empathy in three steps. First, humans began pair bonding with our mates as a way of raising our young. The need to cooperate with another person to keep babies alive encouraged our brains to grow. Second, humans started living in communities. Having to regularly deal with other people made us smarter. …Third, human tribes had to cooperate to survive in harsh environments, where food was scarce. Here, we learned the importance of putting the good of all over our own desires. Essentially, relationships are at the core of why we evolved the way we did.