Sculpting Nature and Societies

Humans can’t go backwards as much as they might often like to.  Any group that becomes less competitive than its neighbors will surely be pushed aside and reduced to a historical footnote.  Yet societies as we know them must be repressive.  This is because modern mass societies are in inherent conflict with the human being’s animal nature.

Furthermore, fleeing to nature is no paradise or solution.  When instincts rule, there’s a lot of zero sum mating games and conflicts over resources.  Technology is older than Homo sapiens, our species is not properly developed to survive without it.  There is no stamping out or eliminating it.  In a way of thinking, we are unnatural by nature.

There’s nothing inherently sacred about nature.  It’s a spontaneously occurring system of genetic selection.  Human technology based societies simply have a somewhat different, slightly less spontaneous system of selection.  Our system is not necessarily any less valid than nature.  In many ways our notion of separation from the natural world is fallacious.

Take an ant colony for instance.  It’s an enclosed territory that is governed by the reality of their collective.  The laws that govern ant survival are considerably different within the colony than in the outside world.  Few of us would say however, that these ants exist outside of nature or are unnatural.  Humans live in societies and laws of survival in societies are very different from those in the outside world.  In the case of ants, we view their collective as a single entity and judge its survival accordingly.  We readily take note of its tendencies, its strengths, its weakness, and its fitness.  It would be a small and intuitively achievable matter to plan the best, most effective circumstances for an ant society based on all the observed characteristics.

It would never occur to the human observer to instead try to change ant society without first changing the nature of the ants themselves.  Yet this is the approach adopted by nearly every reformer, every ideologically motivated individual throughout human history.

Humans have commonly attempted to solve social problems by punishing individuals, making changes in the rules, rule enforcement procedures, group ideologies…

Thousands of years of recorded history tells us that adopting this reactive strategy is like fighting a perpetual battle against the winds and the tide.  It is to labor in opposition to the characteristic tendencies of human beings.


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