Devolution of the species – the next millennium…
The punctuation of the last two thousand years was fixated on fictitious but enhancing Christian beliefs providing so much of the world with its greatest symbolism. With all of it invented to appease humans over the age-old question of where we go from birth, through life and what happens when we die. Indications are that for the next millennium major changes will take place giving rise to the question of whether humans as a species will be able to adjust or whether the move will be towards devolution.
Now science has proven that evolution cannot work in reverse so there is no way to go back towards being chimpanzees but there is nothing to stop going forward into something which resembles humans but with differing physical and mental structures.
So what is likely to drive this next millennium? Back to this enmeshment within religion which while having made an enduring focus on human development, has at the same time enforced delusional beliefs punctuated where it is said that over 35 percent of Americans still firmly believe in Christianity and the Bible, hence having accept talking snakes, virgin births and that God who is perfect nevertheless forgot to remove the foreskin making this a prerequisite to belief against eternal damnation.
So it has been so easy to focus on the good parts of Christianity and that wonderful fairy story of the Bible while leaving out all the horror these beliefs have invoked. Humans have always needed stories. But truth is something no one really wants to hear. In the beginning, climbing out of the depth and through the slime to evolve, when humans crawled out of the trees or out of the cave and started to look at the sky, they started to wonder where they came from. A greater unknown was in regard to dying and what happened after that. Looking for answers they focused on the stars, the coming and going of the sun and moon and tried to make some sense from them in the answers to their questions. Meanwhile they developed practices to see the dead on their way, from burial to cremation and even by retaining the corpses or parts of them for worship. While the biggest and strongest man in the cave received the largest share of food, got to put his seed into his selection of women and controlled the rest, even he could not provide any of these answers. The heavens however were always the driving force as humans thinking the earth was flat, marvelled at coming of dawn and dusk and how temperature varied with different phases of the sun and moon.
First as hunters and gathers, people looked at how the seasons effected the animals they chased, where this became even more important as populations settled and planted crops which depended on regular rains. To encourage these events, humans began rituals to try and encourage consistency with the creation of the first God worship such as aligned to sun and moon. In the cave, amongst the strongest came some smaller and wiser men who tried to make some sense out of these occurrences and in turn were revered and became cult figures whose words people followed. A bit of magic helped. Obviously clever men, their explanations had to make some sort of sense and it was not long before the less intellectual were sucked in. With no written accounts, people started telling tantalizing stories. In earlier days, stronger tribal leaders were smart enough to engage with the wise men in order to direct the people over whom they wanted control for that biggest slice of meat. They dished out favours with more meat and people became beholding.
As societies developed, to maintain rule and some degree of order, it was necessary to introduce the concepts of good and evil, right and wrong. Killing your neighbour, bad. Killing a neighbouring tribesman raiding your village, good. Doing what the head man said, good, and so on. Again, these local priests were employed to set out the broad rules within which communities were to work and at the same time to come up with appropriate punishments. Even back then man was a herd animal learning not to go against the consensus no matter how wrong. The biggest brute in the cave is not always the smartest.
With human progression, it was then discovered that an even greater control of the population could be achieved if there was a heaven where you went if you were collectively good, or a hell for all other activity. But overall a belief that there was some purpose for life overall had to founded in religion otherwise why not just have it lead to a lifetime living in a cave on a mountain chanting mantras? So to make this thing work, it was necessary to set it into an acceptable framework preferably with a divine god, or preferably many in case one did not work. This of course scored the smart ones points with the people in charge. To keep this whole system working, the clever philosophers who made a living from this thing studied the stars and made predictions as to the seasons and why things happened. They had to be very smart with this since no one had yet worked out what happened when a person died, so invented stories which would appease what could not be explained. Being clever men, they conjured up supreme beings who could be resurrected for their good deeds and if not completely returned to earth as mortals, would after death be able to continue an even better life than on earth with everyone reunited. They set auspicious birth dates for their deities, such as the twenty fifth of December corresponding to the end of an era leading to a new awakening of Spring and they set physical occurrences to coincide with movement of stars in the heavens. Of course, the instructions on what to do had to come from supreme authorities or straight from some god where evidence could be circumstantial.
When some under Egyptian rule didn't accept Pharos as immortal, they drifted across the Red Sea into what was known as Canaan to choose one main God inventing another story of a Moses, the bull rush example copied from a similar earlier legend. Then there were his tablets to set down the laws although a pity he smashed them in a rage over people still having other gods before anyone could verify his God had written them. But again, it made a good story although the Exodus had no support in archaeology and Moses must have been some leader to guide his people for 40 years over a distance of around 432 miles around Canaan before finding the promised land and the City of David. This story became an allegorical interpretation before the Canaanites organised themselves into what became Jews, and then after the shock of the Egyptian’s destroying King David’s temple, they took this as a warning, got rid of the up to then Mrs. God and became monotheists under a God called YAHWE, who as in Harry Potter became, “He who cannot be named”. Overall, introducing this religion thing was a master stroke since now there was a formalized system for keeping whole populations in order, justifying wars and not paying taxes by having God on your side, and leaders didn’t have to prove anything because the outcome was that no one wanted not to have hope after death, so were not ready to challenge anything sold to them. Remembering that rulers requiring armies of men ready to die in battle, found it convenient to assure these poor souls that they would die for a righteous cause and a great heaven would be awaiting their sacrifice. Imagine people prepared to throw away their lives if they thought that would be the end of it. Funny though, how there can be wars where you can have the same God on both sides or even different versions of the same religion fighting each other.
So the Romans, with probably one of the most extensive empires in history had to keep their people in line and having had as the Emperor said, “These bothersome Jews" giving them trouble, found the Jesus story of, “Offer the other cheek” and “Give unto Caesar” a convenient way of keeping people in line and overcoming the taxation issue. Over time the Romans supported this one God concept enhanced by a turncoat Jew, Josephus which was easier to follow than having so many gods, each with their own ideas and they supported what became the clergy in order to enforce this work for them. These new Jews continued to give the Roman Empire further headaches which led to various uprisings still taxation driven, so the literature of the day went along with many seers who were touted would come along and save the Jews. This Jesus was selected out of the many contenders wandering around at the time which facilitated the Romans to keep the Jews in order. This new idea clearly promoted by writers of the time under the house of Flavius embellished by this Josephus and his masters lasted for hundreds of years until Roman Emperor Constantine legalized Christianity in the early 4th century and then stepped in to try and standardize various texts and establish rules for electing future Popes who now decreed that they spoke directly for God and could not be questioned. It was at this same time the Christian trinity was invented and the church proclaimed that Jesus with the stroke of a pen was now in fact, from now on, also God.
Until out of the desert the Arabs challenged the Roman might and having learned their lessons well, in defeating the Roman legions, needing their own saviour outside of this Jesus, around the 7th Century AD, Mohammed emerged to be built up as a counterpoint against Jesus and the Byzantine empire. As with Jesus, a large part of Mohammed’s early life lacks detail as the stories were put together only later including many Jesus references as the Bible had used those of Josephus’ books. Lots of detail in this way did not compute, as for the location of Mecca to which one must pray. With this new religion, having learned how the eventual collapse of the Roman ideology came about when people switched sides or drifted off, death was prescribed as punishment should anyone renounce the new faith. The Catholic church later learned from that and brought in its own inquisition in which hundreds of thousands were slaughtered. Meanwhile the Arabs saw they couldn’t compete against the Christian opulence of their churches and richness of symbolism so banned such ostentation from their religion. Capturing Constantinople from the Romans suggested they were on the right track. But they were also not going to have anyone, challenge, drop out or renounce the new faith on threat of death. For children the idea of flying back and forth on a donkey to an angel debating the number of times one had to pray a day would make great bedtime reading but then how many versions of Cinderella has Disney brought out? Not much difference to believing in talking snakes.
The world progressed as human animals fought each other over the centuries to establish their turfs, with leaders operating similarly from those in the cave only on a larger scale, backed by their divine guides asserted their rights and cemented their dynasties. Meanwhile religious leaders equally fought to cement their areas of influence leading to some of the most horrific human destruction and torture in the name of God. Over time and despite two world wars (or one extended world war depending how it is regarded - or three if one throws in Ukraine), humans at the top of the “symbolic” tree, realised that to stay there, they had to make it look like collectively they were sympathetic to the poor and weak and built systems to give this appearance. Saddled with ancient Greek and Roman thinking of democracy, this had to be given some acknowledgement that everyone had a say and hence this concept of one man (then one person) one vote had to be tempered from when votes were only coming from those with power and money to influence them. Bringing the man from his cave to the present makes very few changes since in the USA it is estimated around two and a half percent of the population fund the nomination of candidates before then the 100 percent of people can vote. The cave man is still in charge and controls those and all the assets around him by one means or another, whether by allowing others to have tenure on property and assets or whether allocating these to the collective.
The problem has expounded with the explosion of the population and its interconnectivity, where it becomes harder to keep everyone happy about their share of the meat and social media can easily show how some at the top get more than those as the bottom can even contemplate. Hence at this level people feel that they will always be left out. No longer able to believe that there is a heaven which will give earthly suffering meaning, so no longer caring, many will revolt no matter the cost or the consequence. But the democracy story has told them how everyone gets a say and law and order along with sanctity of human life matters, whether black or any other colour which also puts policing in a dilemma. A country with a population of over a billion and a half realizes if a country of 330 million can’t control its population by “democracy”, a country will only survive under a heavy hand and policies which are what the biggest man in the cave says they are, whether that means executing dissenters and low life criminals or locking people up for thought re-education. It works for them. Meanwhile those living in “democracies” with the legal right to complain, riot, loot and scream out against their governments being too stupid to see what is coming say they don’t care.
So into the next millennium… Humans have evolved considerably over the last two thousand years as science has laid out an advanced level of understanding. Problem is that while with bioengineering, cloning of animals, now being able to breed mice without male sperm and incredible advances in communications, there is still no answer to the age-old question of what happens after life, even if experiments show life can be restored hours after clinically certified death.
So where does all of this take humans in their natural selection inevitability? Well, where the explanation still flows from that cave, where knowing no better, the biggest male sets the tone no matter how deluded allowing procreate to further one’s line. It all comes down to that basic truism around which invented stories simply just have to make it more palatable. Yet following reality and logic of evolution, in coming centuries humans will become smaller physically as they interface with artificial intelligence and connectivity requiring them to move less, aided by algorithms to find a mate with whom to ideally breed, bringing then another more refined generation having even less use for the one before it to survive. World government will eventuate to control the flow of resources while the superhumans extend their life span integrated with AI and move to other planets. Requiring less physical labour, women will evolve to dominate. The stories will continue but individuals will become enmeshed with these into a semi reality which proceeds in tandem with the individual or includes them without personal input becoming part of the narrative. Through this people will on passing have solving this question of existence after death by transferring their reality into a self-perpetuating permanent cloud, answering the question of life after death. Until it would be hoped that while humans have their stories, science and not fairy tales should form their basis rather than the criminality of indoctrinating children with talking snakes and flying donkeys destroying all their illusions in the realisation they have been lied to and how there is no heaven or hell is the realisation of the myth. Truth will eventually reject myth and become science based, no matter how unpalatable…