Our human population is ever increasing. We are exponential in our growth and impact on our planet. David Attenborough has had something to say about this as a growing threat to our own survival on this planet.

We often blame our ‘human nature’ for our railroad track to destruction. We perceive ourselves to be members of a race that is fundamentally flawed and inherently doomed to suffering and consumption. We perceive wisdom is rare, crime is normal and our unsustainable lives unavoidable based on our ‘human nature’. This would indicate a rail road track to extinction – an inevitability – but should we aim to extend our existence longer, we might consider modifying our self destructive behaviours.

So what is the solution?

Utopian Design or Evolution?

Do we try to imagine a sustainable future then design a utopian society that will save the day?

Historically plans designed based on utopian ideals of an imagined future have failed to be successfully sustained, simply because they don’t work. Perhaps utopian systems don’t work because they are based on everyone having godly qualities of perfection

Evolution, on the other hand, works with what we are – accepts us for being selfish, mean, cruel, greedy, violent, kind, loving, thoughtful, generous etc – evolution doesn’t require some sort of utopian perfect god like human beings for it to be successful - evolution works.

If we look at other species of life – we can see that they don’t seem to plan their evolution based on utopian ideals – they evolve based on a feed back loop between their environment – circumstances and their biological survival needs as a species. The ones that keep up and adapt survive – the ones that don’t die out – become extinct. The ones that survive have evolved a strategy that works.

When we think about living a sustainable life we might think this means we have to give up something that we need. But in fact many species of animals are perfectly happy and have all their needs met – and yet don’t cause as much damage to the world as we humans do. So I would suggest that it’s not about giving up what we need, but in fact it is about being innovative about meeting our needs in sustainable ways.

Our latest and most successful change or evolution is a system that hasn’t been designed, planned or based on utopian ideals – it hasn’t been orchestrated by governments, political movements, or social idealisms – it has evolved over time – about 300 years.

It has been achieved incrementally, by people working off each other’s ideas. It has been lead by no one. It wasn’t the initiative of any political, government or religious body. It has no targeted end point. It proceeded according to no plan. It rewarded those who further the evolution in kind.

The industrial revolution is something that wasn’t organised, it wasn’t designed or a utopian ideal – it was something that evolved over time in all areas based on needs that people had and skills and ideas that people tried. A feedback loop was created where our needs encouraged innovation that was shared, tested and embraced in a process of evolution.

What innovative practices can you share that will contribute to the sustainable survival of life on earth into the next century?

Views: 73

Replies to This Discussion

Natalie,

 

Yes I see what you mean.  I’ve had different input regarding some ‘medicine’, so have different understanding – equally valid I think – as the books I’ve read are based on scientific testing and not supernatural or wishful thinking.  The trouble with things at the moment is that those with the most money want to make more money and most the money is going into making white pills as opposed to other options that might be much more easy and cheaper but not patentable – like changing diet or lifestyle.  So what we have evolved is a system that favours medications that make money – not necessarily ones that work best.

 

In terms of acid reflux – there are a few different types – the one you talk about is physical.  The other one is a lack of acid production causing the stomach to churn and squash acid back up the pipe – this is due to too little acid, not too much – which can be caused by a depletion generally in the body’s ability to generate enzymes – due to poor nutrition – and perhaps genetics also – predisposition.  In this case eating a more nutritious diet with more real fats in it can assist to create more stomach acid.  It can be a negative cycle where because lacking in stomach acid later digestion leads to poor assimilation of building blocks to create more stomach acid.  Some doctors proscribe pancreatic enzymes synthetic or from pigs.  I’m only giving parts of the picture here, as I read those books about 3 years ago, and have only retained parts of the story that I can remember and also perhaps only parts that seemed relevant to me at the time.

 

I think regarding birth defects – perhaps in some cases other genes have had an opportunity to carry on and evolve that wouldn’t have otherwise if those children had died – not only the defective genes but other ones with other traits that might turn out to be useful in some way.  In nature sometimes animals have less predators and this leads to certain selection – eg the fish that gain more colours due to female fish selection as opposed to predator selection.  There are many factors involved in selection – not just sexual selection or human intervention selection.  But having created the environment where children with deformities have grown into adults that can reproduce, we now have other selections that lead to changes such as sexual selection for a nicer personality for example?  Who knows – but I don’t think you can say outright that all children who were born deformed should die, in order to keep in line with natural selection.  They may have rare genes that give them something important to contribute to the human race other than the ones that give them their deformity.  Do you see what I’m saying?

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