Understanding Humanities Problems

What are our most pressing concerns?

This page is part of a submission to a global forum established to help reform global governance and an alternative to the current model that is clearly failing. This is less about political systems, it's more about embracing our humanity and making civilisation sustainable based on our available resources and our real instead of imaginary human needs.

Understanding our problems

It is evident that the complete failure of human civilisation and the extinction of our species is an imminent possibility. The real question is, do we have the will and the guts to pull ourselves back from this precipice we have created for ourselves? For certain we have the capacity and the technological means to save ourselves, yet doing so requires that we clearly understand our problems and can generate the will to rise to this occasion.

We owe it to future generations to
reverse the damage we have caused.

Our problems stem from the fact that we inhabit an insignificant planet in a remote corner of the vastness that we call our universe. Yet we choose to believe and act as though we are the only creatures of importance. We have developed a sense of self, a sense of individuality that takes precedent over all life based on transient beliefs aided by a technology that's often environmentally destructive. But while we believe we are so superior, we don't even know which way is up, yet we design conventions and beliefs as if we do to justify our behaviour.

As a result of acting on our ignorance, humanity has been in a perpetual state of disharmony and conflict since time immemorial. Despite the best efforts of the many thinkers who have helped to develop various political ideologies and belief systems, outside of India, no formula has actually worked for any long period which means that we have progressed through a long series of temporary solutions.

These solutions have evolved around natural resources, competition and the need to survive. This has evolved our basic selfishness and a sense that an individual “I” has more right than any other. This is part of our corruption, a disease that has gained economic and political control over life on earth giving rise to the modern religions and capitalism that on one hand helps many people live longer and promotes the consumer society. But on the other hand it continues to dispossess and impoverish millions giving rise to economic refugees.

The role of government is to serve the people, but governments have been led to believe that service is best performed through selective economic and political interests balanced against the perceived material needs of society. This sustains the top 20% and attempts to keep all the rest (the 80% who are dispossessed) in place. While many of us enjoy the idea that we live in a democracy, the population are so divided that democracy has become a joke.

You can see this in the European Parliament where events are dictated by faceless officials enjoying a life of privilege. In the rest of the world, corporations dictate to governments which has led to a form of cooperation between government and corporation which equates to fascism. In many countries we see governments selling indigenous lands to corporations and mining companies, populations being displaced and in some cases exterminated. This is still going on in the world today where the top 20% would rather turn a blind eye while the police and military suppress the voice of reason emerging from those with a conscience, events in which the media is often complicit.

Economics and governance go hand-in-hand and we have created a world where economic ideologies take precedent over human values and human freedom. The modern economic theory; the idea of trickle-down economics is in fact a trickle up as we can see by the increased homelessness and dispossession increasing in all developed countries. Ironically, the criminal behaviour of governments and bankers that has become more transparent due to our modern communications technology actually trickles down to infect those who are dispossessed.

Most people in the world want peace and freedom, want to cooperate, want to understand the nature of existence and our place in the universe, but working against the people are governments elected or otherwise who treat the people as a resource and sell them out to corporate and geopolitical interests. Even the United Nations is complicit in this and backed by the strong hands of the US military and NATO, then we have China which is becoming a new colonial master in parts of Africa and the Asia-Pacific region

We seem to have forgotten that as a species, we as people come from the earth and to find meaning in our lives we need to have a sense of place and belonging. Under various communal and social political models of our recent past, people identified with their local environment and had a sense of belonging. Under the modern economic and capitalist systems, populations have been forced off their land or their national infrastructure has been privatised. People have become commodities, superficial and at the mercy of some faceless bureaucrat which has given rise to a great despair and increased desperation which manifests more crime.

Religion began with Hinduism and elements were morphed into Judaism then Christianity and Islam as political controls. These ideas and beliefs about life have shaped much of European thinking over the last 2 millenia and by extension the ideas of other countries. Superstitions like the “one life” theory, the idea of “flat earth”, Original Sin etc. underlay many common practices we follow today. Our lack of understanding of the origins of these practices makes us believe these were “secular”. In fact secularism itself is an aberration born out of the evils done by religions throughout history.

In an attempt to transcend this, economic and political forces within capitalism have created a new form of tribalism whereby individuals are encouraged to attach themselves old or new ideologies or corporate brands. The peoples fears and anxieties are pacified with alcohol and prescription drugs which have other negative consequences furthering the breakdown of society. This way of existing has brought us to an exciting point in our history, but it's also bringing us to our end so the real problem is how to move forwards without losing everything?

Economics  indicators only measure materialistic well not human wellbeing.

In today's world, the USA is attempting to maintain economic and military supremacy by whatever means necessary without any regard for international law or human values. In contrast, Islam is marching across the globe with the principle of convert or die. Both of these ideologies are wreaking havoc on economies, communities and the environment.

On the economic front, the world's bankers are gambling with the peoples money and when they lose, the people have to pay. We have an economic system that so badly broken that no one can understand the level of debt that most countries are in that is become ludicrous. In this grand game of exploitation and one-upmanship, millions of people die unnecessarily on a daily basis and yet it is only those caught up in suffering who actually care.

Every year we collectively produce enough food to feed more than twice our population yet almost half of the world's human population are malnourished. The top 20% of the world's human population consume 80% of all the worlds produce and there's a massive amount of waste. We have the capacity to comfortably feed, clothe and provide everyone with clean fresh water, but those in power are too caught up in their games and are content to impose suffering on all life.

By continuing in this vein, the only outcome is the complete expiration of the human species and any who do survive may end up as hunter gatherers on dangerously irradiated or otherwise polluted lands. Can we wake up, get real and do something about this?

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3 comments to Understanding Humanities Problems

  • Beccky

    Hi, The problem with human attraction is not knowing if it will be returned.

  • Yukiko Bridgman

    Many of us seem to think that by teaching every human being to read and write, we shall solve our human problems; but this idea has proved to be false. The so-called educated are not peace-loving, integrated people, and they too are responsible for the confusion and misery of the world.
    The right kind of education means the awakening of intelligence, the fostering of an integrated life, and only such education can create a new culture and a peaceful world; but to bring about this new kind of education, we must make a fresh start on an entirely different basis. — Jiddu Krishnamurti

  • Ivan Wayward

    It seems to me that few people are prepared to acknowledge their own problems and especially their own complicity in creating them. Ignorance is bliss and because so many people have their heads buried in the sand, few will notice when the tide comes in

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