Signs of Real Humanity Evolution
We humans spend a lot of time talking about and worrying about and doing stuff that doesn’t really matter in the grand scheme of things. And I’m not just talking about the obvious things, like Real Housewives of New Jersey. I mean stuff that the media and schools tell us is important. Including stuff that I used to think was important – like politics, GMOs, how “big chemical” is poisoning us, the revolving door between government, finance and business, widespread corruption, and how the financial elite continues to fleece us peons. I still think these things are important, because they impact those whom we care about.
But, from a broader, larger, and historical perspective, which party wins the election, what the stock market does, which countries rise or fall, or who wins the war, are, to quote Dr. Evil, “quite inconsequential.” It’s like rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Everyone dies and new humans take their place. Every civilization declines and new ones rise.
Where is the evolution of humanity?
It is a mistake to think it is found in science or technology. As much as I love gadgets and the bleeding edge of high tech, products do not equate to the evolution of a species. Cloning, nuclear power, nanotech, and 3D printing are not signs of human evolution. They are merely examples of our ability to control matter.
Nor are medical advances that extend our life expectancy. Does it really make sense that living longer evolves our species in some way? On the contrary, it only causes more problems. Humans now have to compete with an ever-increasing number of humans for limited resources. Instead of dying of quickly of natural causes, we live past our natural life expectancy and instead die slowly and miserably, often without dignity. And the increasing human population rapidly takes away and destroys habitats for countless species of other conscious life forms, as well as using them for cruel experimental medical research, which continues the cycle and only serves to make big pharmaceutical companies even bigger. It is all based on the mistaken assumption that we live in a cold materialistic objective reality. Hardly evolved thinking.
All is not lost however. Despite the war profiteers and religious nuts that contribute to the devolution of humanity, we slowly progress in the right direction. From the Magna Carta in 1215 to the United States Bill of Rights in 1789 to broader recognition of gender and racial equality in the 20th Century, to the fact that homicide rates have dropped by a factor of 30 in Europe over the past 500 years, it can be said that this trend represents positive evolution.
Another good sign is the general trend away from religious dogma and toward spiritual growth. The percentage of Americans who don’t identify with a particular religious preference has grown steadily from 2% in 1950 to 16% in 2010. At the same time, the desire for “spiritual growth” has increased from 58 percent in 1994 to 82% five years later, according to a USA Today/Gallup poll. Why is this a sign of evolution? Because religious dogma teaches you that you are right and they are wrong, while unaffiliated spiritual discovery almost always results in the recognition that love is what really matters.
And finally, my favorite sign of human evolution is exemplified by what India did a few months ago in declaring dolphins to be “non-human persons” with similar rights including the right not to be held captive. Three other countries have similar laws and more are sure to follow. I believe that this, along with a significant trend away from cruel animal practices (think free range chickens, more vegetarians, and the growth of no-kill shelters) is a sure sign that more and more humans are recognizing that they aren’t the only ones with rights on this planet. Truly evolved thinking.
So maybe there’s hope for us yet.