Random Ramblings: Human Evolution: Where are We Headed?
Life will find a way. But what way?
Life will find a way. That is the greatest miracle of all miracles, and yet it's completely taken for granted, as if there is no plan or purpose to the existence of life. As if the life source - energy - has no will of it's own. If it had no will, would we evolve? Why bother to tweak and perfect, create innovations like teeth, eyes, wings, hands? Minds? If there were no ambition, why not be satisfied with being a simple blob of cells? Why bother with existence at all? If nothing else, we should all know that existing on the physical plane can be a painful, cruel struggle, and yet, a small seed will struggle to thrive on a spoonful of dirt found in the crack of an inner city cement sidewalk, stomped flat by many feet. Still, it is green, tough, and stubborn. It wants to survive.
Here we are in 2013, and it seems a lot of us believe that this is it. After billions of years of tweaking, we are the final result of evolution. Thank you, evolution; but we will take it from here.
In truth, looking at human history, it doesn't seem as we have changed much, over time. But with the short span of time we exist in our bodies, 100 years seems to be forever for us, and we really can't conceive or understand the billions of years it has taken us to get to this point. Some of us believe that we simply popped into existence - our bones show up starting from a certain time period - nothing seems to link us further to the past. The bones we have found of our ancient ancestors haven't changed much over all the time we have known them to exist. How old are the oldest human bones ever found? "Lucy" walked the earth more than 3.2 million years ago. "Ardi" appears to have existed a million years before that. Our oldest ancestors may have yet to be discovered; maybe we will be found to exist as far back as 10 million years ago.
The process of evolving over 10 millions years is pretty much unfathomable to us. It would appear to be a very small amount of change. If we have been evolving, it seems to be painfully slow, or, perhaps, there was simply very little to tweak. The physical form of human has proved to be very versatile and able to exist in every extreme environment of our earth, and in this century, beyond our earth.
The variation in animal life on this earth is almost infinite in the possibilities, and we still discover new life every day that we never knew existed before. Birds, for instance. We have finches, parrots, cranes, waterfowl, turkeys, peacocks, ostriches, kiwis - all of these are birds, and yet they vary so greatly. They have evolved to exist in the specific environment they are in.
Humans have, too. We have evolved various skin colors, muscle types, bone structure, body sizes - we evolved to suit our native environments. But compared to birds, these differences are very subtle. No human has developed wings like a bat, no human has developed a muzzle like a dog, no human has an elongated neck like a crane. All of humanity carries the same basic shape, with subtle variations. The characteristics humans have evolved are enough for us to conquer any environment. We don't need wings - we can build them. We don't need a shovel-shaped bill like some water birds - we can make a shovel. We don't need webbed feet - we can build a boat. The thing we evolved most was our brain, and it evolved to suit the environment it was in. So people of different cultures, instead of looking vastly different from one another, think vastly different from one another.
And now, in 2013, we seem to think we have stopped. We are the final product.
Now, we seem to think we are devolving. Autism, ADHD, learning disabilities all seem to be effecting us in greater and greater numbers. Emotional disorders, mental disorders, drug use. Differences in sexual orientation seem to effect people in larger and larger numbers. All these things seem to be regarded as bad things to be happening to us - the future of human life looks very bleak, to some. What are we becoming?
Some of us blame ourselves for changing the earth too quickly; in 100 years, we went from no electricity to walking on the moon. Think of that, in the 10 million year evolution of humanity. 100 years. And also in that time, we have stripped the earth of many of it's forests and built roads and cities that cover much of the surface of every continent on the earth. Nowhere on this planet is there not a human presence, and the human presence seeks to change the most primitive areas of human life to match that of the most advanced. Humans seek to make the world a fair, safe place for all life. Well. All HUMAN life.
Now we have paused to take a look at our work, and are dismayed by what we see. Have we helped? Or have we hindered? Are we in too much of a hurry? And more important that any other question - what is the goal we are working toward?
What is the goal we are working toward? We; all of humanity. Where do we intend to go with this? What is the goal we are working toward?
Have any of us really stopped to ask ourselves that question? With our technology, with the internet, we have the ability to work together as one entity. We ARE one entity, and whether we understand how we got to this point or not, we have all worked instinctively to bring our individual physical selves, our cultures, our subtle variations, back together to be one people. We have fought and warred and argued; why? Because we have forgotten what it is we are, and we have concentrated on the "I" instead of the "we". We concentrated on surviving in the environments we were born to; ice, snow, rain, desert, heat. Jungle, forest, marshland, mountain, plain. We perfected human life to live in Asia, Russia, Europe, Africa, the Americas, Australia. Antarctica. In doing so we traveled and found others who lived and thought very differently from us, and like the skin cell coming across a liver cell, we thought, "I am right. They are wrong." And we warred and we argued. And we learned. And we evolved.
And now, we are here, in 2013. Every possible bit of knowledge we might want to know can be found through technology, on the internet. We can study and understand other cultures, and in so doing learn that we are all both right and wrong in the things that we have learned and believe. We all have the ability to learn and change and adapt. We are, at this point in history, completely capable of becoming united as the one entity we were truly meant to be, and in so doing, understand that all of the life around us has evolved as we have, and has the same right to be here. More. We need to realize that the brain of an organism cannot survive without it's other parts. We are the brain of this overall life force that manifests on this planet, but to continue to exist, we need our lungs and heart and mobility which is all the "lesser" life that is around us. We need to understand that perhaps, there is no lesser life.
We need now, to unite and study our history, not from the viewpoint of right or wrong, but from the viewpoint of overall. What have we done, over the time of human history, to improve the evolution of all life? What have we done to destroy it; destroy each other, based on our beliefs that "I" am right and "they" are wrong? What have we done, based on our beliefs that fame and money and possessions are the absolute end goals that we have been striving for? What have we done to make our lives easier, that really has had a detrimental effect on all life, over time? What have we done in judgement of others based on morals and beliefs we developed as we grew and adapted to live in individual areas of the earth?
What can we do to stop the bad trends and change them? What can we do to encourage the good trends and develop them? How do we decide what is good and what is bad for the evolution of all life? Who gets to make the rules?
Who will lead this new religion?
No one will. We all will. As we all work together as one entity, we will, as individuals, work on different aspects of the whole.
There is disease - we will study and research and learn how to evolve past disease and physical frailties. There is waste - styrofoam and plastic and disposable items - we will study and learn how to evolve past temporary fixes towards long term, recyclable ones. There is sloth - making life too easy. We will study and learn how to evolve towards a life where we work our bodies in productive ways, to keep them physically fit while at the same time serving an actual useful function to better the world around us. There is war. We will study and learn to evolve past that and work together as one life force. There is development. We will study and learn how to make nature and human habitats blend together in a perfect balance for all life. There is culture. We will study and learn how human life can best work together in the areas where we are obviously lacking. Government. The family unit. Religion. All of these things need to be carefully reviewed and evolved. Yes - even religion can evolve. The ultimate goal for humanity can be achieved by following a multitude of different paths. No one needs to feel threatened by evolution.
At the same time the, force of nature continues to evolve. More and more, we see new aspects of evolution that are disturbing to us. Learning and emotional disabilities, genetic diseases that seem to be more and more prevalent, changes in human mental and physical ability that seem extremely alarming and detrimental. We have forced great changes in the past 100 years; it would appear that natural evolution has no choice but to pick up the pace to match it. When the earth changed drastically, evolution geared up to create the adaptations necessary to survive the changes. The earth has changed drastically over a period of 100 years - not just an earthquake, or a volcano erupting. Wide spread change over the entire surface, over all the continents and the waters of the earth. Humanity is no doubt evolving physically to match the changes it has made on the world. Seeing this happening, the question should now be: What is it we want to evolve into? A weak bodied, large brained entity, that can manipulate the physical world through technology, or an entity adapted to balance and survive all aspects of the physical world around it?
We all need to realize what it is we are. Once we realize that, there is no excuse for any of us to close our eyes and ears to it. We are here to do a job. We have a purpose, and it's not simply to breathe, eat, reproduce and die. We, each and every one of us, has a very important job to do. We have the world's learnings at our fingertips, we have many of the peoples of the world to communicate with. We are capable of teaching ourselves what we need to know, investigating and learning and discovering for ourselves how we can change the way we operate daily. We will all stumble and fall, but that's not the point. The point is, we must all TRY. We cannot simply sit and worry and complain and hope for a savior to make our world a better place.
We ARE our savior. Once we all realize that, there can be no excuses. Find what makes your heart's passions flame to life, and follow it. We are all here for the same purpose, but there is a myriad of different aspects each individual can pursue to change the fate of all. Do you see? No one leads. No matter how small and insignificant you think you are, how poor, or uneducated, or addicted, or disabled, or lazy; you are important, and what you do matters. You have no choice now but to see that you are OUR savior. We are OUR savior.
Our fate. It's in our hands.