Far too many events today are due to decisions by people who think only of themselves.
This is unnatural.
The hermit, alone in his cave, has always been an idiosyncratic caricature. The word hermit is derived from the word for desert or desert dweller. Deserts are not particularly attractive to people who depend on hunting and gathering. Deserts are more successful as after the invention of are air-conditioned houses and refrigerated food trucks. (Casinos, although optional, seem inevitable.)
Humans from earliest times sought out one another. Our ancestors, the Homo erectus, (stop thinking dirty thoughts–it refers to having the ability to stand upright) or Homo sapiens neanderthalensis tended to keep their families together, eventually becoming tribes. Some believe that the reason that there are no identifiable descendants of the Neanderthals is because the two groups combined and interbred, ultimately resulting in us, Homo sapiens.
We belong together, but sometimes are reluctant to admit it. As such, in order to survive and prosper, we must look at things in terms of the common good. Life is not a zero-sum game (if I win, you lose). It is a life-or-death struggle in which WE win or lose.
I could wax poetic for another 300 pages, which I might enjoy, but WE, as a totality, would not, so I’ll stop.
* Links courtesy of Wikipedia. If you use Wikipedia, then use PayPal to send them a few bucks–better yet, a few bucks a month.
Steve, your post is fascinating. I respectfully disagree with you that it is unnatural for humans to be selfish: I believe it is more natural for us to be selfish than unselfish. We must work and even fight to be unselfish–and care FOR, care ABOUT, and to be CAREFUL WITH one another. Enjoy the following poem.
Sometimes we’re faced with an important task,
And think, where can we turn or who can we ask;
Sometimes we’re stuck so we stand still and stare,
Saying “I didn’t cause this so why should I care?”
Sometimes we watch the most terrible news,
Of people who die while defending their views;
We sit and we watch desperation and despair,
Saying “This is about them why should I care?”
Sometimes we’re blind to the problems of others,
And forget they could be our sisters or brothers;
We pretend we can’t see or are just unaware,
Or think, “It only hurts them so why should I care?”
We give it thought and it’s quite plain to see,
Those troubles really do affect you and me;
If we truly love then we must be aware,
Our goodness starts with our heart to care.
Problems aren’t solved by heads stuck in sand,
We need to engage and reach out a hand;
For we live in a world that we all have to share,
And that my friend is why we must always care.