Do We Have What It Takes? F5

From the daring mind of Mojave66:

What are the five things you think that humanity needs in order to survive and evolve into a peaceful civilization? “Things” could mean a philosophy, a technology, a spiritual perspective, a type of government… anything.

This is not such a hard question. I think humanity needs very little to survive and evolve into a peaceful civilization:

  • A total genetic overhaul, along with a massive change in environment from the one in which we evolved. (We’ve currently managed one kind of massive change but I’m not sure it’s the one we want.) Look, we’re hunters and killers by nature. Even when we developed agriculture, we used all that extra energy and supportable population to kill one another over land. Plenty of us are generally peaceful be our species, at a very deep level, isn’t. It’s gonna take a massive overhaul to work that out, I think.
  • More space. More nice space. Room to stretch and live and eat decently.
  • Enough technology to obviate all exploitation of other people, and render labour free to any and all people.
  • A radically new mythology, art, and historiography that heroicizes peacemakers and nonviolent individuals, including artists, poets, negotiators, leaders, physicians, and volunteers of all stripes, and which paints anyone who directly or indirectly uses violence for personal profit or national benefit (beyond the benefits of self-defense) as monstrous.
  • Some form of government that nobody’s thought of yet, that encompasses both individual joy and freedoms with individual duty and responsibility to the society; and one by which the force of responsibility is inescapable.

Needless to say, I have my doubts about the possibility of any of this, but I think it’d take another 5000 years or so to get anywhere close to this. And I have my doubts about the possibility of success even in that span of time. But one must hope. Anyone interested in this should go read Olaf Stapledon’s novel Star Maker (and Last and First Men) right now.

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