One of the most interesting set of essays I’ve read recently has been a series by Eliezer Yudkowsky at Overcoming Bias. He writes on evolution as a process involving
non-zero statistical correlation between the gene and how often the organism reproduces, rather than a magic purposefullness fairy. And in a very useful way, he clarifies how individual organisms (in particular, conscious ones), fit into the picture (or don’t). Plus, there’s a Cthulhu mythos reference for good measure! How could I not like?
Read and enjoy.