Many animals depend on their DNA programming to drive quite complex behaviours. Birds build nests, frogs sound out mating calls, fawns couch hidden in long grass. We call this instinct.
As humans, we can feel ourselves above such primitive activities. We admit that DNA affects our physical bodies – eye colour, facial characteristics, hereditary diseases – but our minds are surely our own. Culture and education shape our thoughts and feelings. We are Civilised.
Deep in the Jungian shadows of our beings, other influences lurk.
As a species, like any other, we inhabit an environment which provides all our needs. This has a carrying capacity. Only a certain number of us can be supported by it. Our DNA adapts slowly and is barely past our hunter-gatherer stage, where this number was really quite small. It responds when this capacity is exceeded. Territorial behaviour is stimulated. Survivors get to breed, while exiles may starve. DNA cares for nothing else.
Humans are complex creatures however. In our recent evolutionary path, we have discovered the advantages of large temporary gatherings. Trade helped small communities thrive, celebrations were fun, and genetic material exchanged which delighted the DNA.
To adapt to this, our core programming developed an over-ride, to avoid aggression when in an unfeasibly large crowd. This over-ride is dependent on large crowds being okay, the way things happened to be right then. People would, of course, soon disperse back to their own territories to gather more resources. No problem.
For thousands of years, this is how it was.
Even though this strategy wears thin when city dwellers are constantly surrounded by more people than any natural environment could sustain, it has held up. Population density has thus increased well beyond any carrying capacity, because people have allowed themselves to be deluded into a belief that more resources were a short distance away. After all, there was little sense of threat, no significant shortages, everyone seemed calm enough….
Suddenly this has changed.
Thanks to global communication networks, there is now a sense of threat everywhere. This danger is perceived as coming from other people, not from natural disasters. The over-ride has broken. The individual is abruptly conscious of population density, and experiences a rising panic.
These feelings are thrust into the subconscious. People don’t want to face them, don’t want to consider solutions, none of which are comfortable.
These daemons cannot be suppressed. They are right, and they know it.
Irrational behaviours boil up. People are becoming more aggressive, more tribal, keener to identify the ‘other’. Intellect is becoming increasingly desperate in denying the power of these forces. Talk of new farming techniques, artificial food, space colonies – these are paper shelters in a tsunami. Every time a human goes outside in a city now, the whisper from the dark says ‘see, there are too many people here’.
We are all in considerable danger.
Population has to be managed down to carrying capacity. The religious, political and ‘economic’ barriers to a severe but fair form of family planning must be removed. If this can be achieved, perhaps all that is valuable about civilisation can survive the coming storm. Intelligence needs to be applied to solutions, not ever more cunning strategies of denial.
Speak out before you flee with your grab bag! You’ve little to lose and much to gain.
Think about it.
Normal posts will be resumed soon….
I’ve been puzzled by the storm of hate on social media, especially Twitter, and took some time to carefully consider this as it is likely to impact on resilient behaviour. Large numbers of people seem to have lost the plot, though others are more engaged in positive community building than before. The latter is not attracting such widespread attention.
The resilience student is advised to remain calm and consider their position.