In a recent new television drama, suggested here only as a reference point, the human race devolves into a lesser animal species. A clever scientist decides some carefully selected original humans should venture into “sleep”, as part of an “ark”, and awakened supposedly thousands of years later. As the story unfolds, the devolution of the masses resulted in dangerously destructive life forms. To save the human race from the deterioration of its previously degenerating state, a new enclave is created for those chosen to carry on human existence. A good question to pose, is why?
As modern day stories go, whether movies or television, the implications concerning human extinction ought to instigate serious social discourse. From a dramatic tone, the particular artistic expression is an interesting conception. Reflecting debasing human antics in today’s world should stir the imagination, and motivate problem-solving action. However, over time, with human beings, what actually changes? Technology aside, where the few create mechanistic conveniences for the many, human nature does not alter its selfish, arrogant and regressive thinking process.
Yet, in defiance to conforming consensus, there are small groups of those willing to work strenuously to change themselves. Regardless though, the challenges are significant. That is because, for the vast numbers of global peoples, many choose the easier ways to relish in more simplistic primordial modes. From a cave-like emergence of primeval ignorance, through successive generations, humans propagate unenlightened “forms” of their own species. Of which, there are a number of real scientists who believe humankind are devolving. By “real science”, as used here, the reference is to what was once referred to as the “hard sciences” versus the “soft sciences”. A hard science refers to fields such as physics, astronomy, chemistry, and biology.
In opposition to evidence based aspects of serious science, and by extension scientific inquiry, there are the competing fields of pseudoscience. These represent the various speculative schools of thought as in criminology, sociology, psychology, religious ideology, and any derivations thereof. Within this scheme, one should also include fringe areas, like the occult, paranormal studies, and ufology. In some universities, some of these were once referred to as the “social and behavioral sciences”.
Seemingly, by way of a pretense to “scientific inquiry” some fields of study concoct an amazing array of diagnoses. In particular, for one of field of “behavioral analysis”, a diagnostics manual was invented. Each year, “new mental illness” designations are entered into a growing database of endless speculations. Without any basis of evidentiary substantiation in terms of physical, organic or biological proof, theories become conclusions, and easily pacify a regressing culture. In such, most people will believe anything. This results in a grotesque collusive infliction throughout society.
From unscientific conjecture to exploitative consumption, to degrading and barbaric acts of torture and murder, both sanctioned and illegal, humans continue to devolve. While fiction is one thing and reality quite another, good storytelling can serve several meaningful purposes. If done well, stories impart compelling ethical lessons. Fables, parables and so forth ought to elevate and inspire, yet demonstrate the horrors of adverse human intentions. A hero’s quest becomes a reminder about important learning points that are relevant for human development. If done wrong, stories can be dangerous.
Unfortunately, in many post-modern depictions, the means of expression through the various “visual art forms” have become intellectually debased, ethically ambiguous and juvenile in the debasement of intellectual capacity. Contrived to be simplistic and not overly taxing to collective imaginations, the array of social networking, media and so on, perpetrate degrading levels of ignorance. Pseudoscience for instance contributes to the growing interactivity of “magical thinking” laced with emotional negativity.
Foolish, immature and socially irrelevant, and communicating below a high school level, many aspects of “edutainment” venues serve mass marketing purposes. To that end, the objective is not intellectual achievement, moral transformation, educational enrichment or social advancement. Instead, from alleged news reporting to politicizing public policy issues, the impetus is to maximize consumptive processes.
As a gluttonous consumer culture, materiality, particularly at the top of the social pyramid is to ensure the perpetuity of special interests. Frequently, constant bombard of advertisements strive to encourage voracious consumerism, tainted by a debasing slant of anti-intellectualism and spurious anti-science inclination. One example is the “invention” of the so-called problem of “mental illness problem”. Any time a major disruptive incident occurs, we label such a “mental health” issued.
From that juncture in the societal crossroads come the prevaricating inferences to promote the next quick fix, remedy, concoction, and easy cure-all answer. For the heavily embedded “belief systems” influenced by supernatural fixations, but pretending to find alleged “scientific” solutions, the vanity hastens irreversible regression. However, for the continuity of wealth building, such perpetrations increase the “productivity”, consumption and output of global commercialized interests. Mass consumerism pacifies a significant number on the planet and ensures commercial servitude.
Certainly, as pseudoscience triumphs over serious science, any modicum of social progress will atrophy into communal regression. Coming up with convenient and clever collusions, particularly solving behavioral issues by labeling people and prescribing “psycho-pharmaceuticals” does nothing to advance human civilization. Such is the incessant arrogance of devolving to an invented “diagnosis of mental illness”. This suggests only a small aspect of species heading toward extinction.
To do that, cite various aspects of behavior as a “mental health problem”, at least on a superficial level, infers a treatment, and treatments assume a “cure”. An alleged fix or remedy potentially invites profitability. The cycle is never ending and the conjecture compounds the incessant and relentless pursuit of a “therapy”, which leads to medicinal intervention. That means moneymaking opportunities. Traveling the rocky road of “diagnosis”, subsequently labeling people in a one size fits all template, and eventually invoking “chemical remedies”, instigates the presumed need for “patient care”.
Such questionable “scientific” attempts at behavioral control have led to an overly medicated society in constant need of “victimization”. Not too long ago, as history tells us, the idea of “social hygiene”, or advances in “mental health”, were considered “scientific” for the betterment of society. The Nazis certainly made good use of pretentiously misguided “scientific” approaches to justify social atrocities.
In the post-modern realm of “anti-thinking”, there comes the incessant drive to characterize a broad range of illicit behaviors as a “mental health problems”. Thus, the persistent intention of capitalizing on hasty and substantiated conclusions continues, by which a majority accepts and contrives to ignore history. The extraordinarily reaches of this “psycho-medical-pharmaceutical” industrial complex aids and abets clever government, media and corporate complicities, in a process of human devolution.
As to the edutainment industry, divergent spectrum in American culture assert the divisive construct of arguing for the excusable nature of immature and maladaptive behaviors. No matter how heinous the destructive conduct, or torturous the infliction, excuses easily come to the rescue for the malevolent actors involved. Seemingly, one might agree that intellectual stimulation, and by innovative connection creativity, is woefully absent, perhaps stupidly crafted to avoid accountability.
Some might debate the deliberate mechanisms of a “dumbing down” effect is taking place, given the immature nature of most visual programming across a wide spectrum. Or, by comparison, a video gone “viral”, perhaps even “bacterial”, purporting substance beyond the immediate superficiality of context, inspires millions to claim belief in the idiocy of their psychic dysfunctions. Fallacies of inference easy masquerade as public policy, as press corps aficionados and politicians assert their cognitive biases.
Expressions of caustic stupidity, simplistic anecdotes and faulty analogies seldom claim the efficacy of well-founded logic and provable evidence. Yet, such things demonstrate the gradual processes of a species in regression. Such is a life form, sometimes erroneous referred to a “civilization”, chase fake news stories, easily accepted at face value. Swiftly, such immature beliefs circulate the internet, stream across social networks, as many people quickly run with what they think are the “facts”.
As the usual foolish course of events transpire, such antics remain amusing to observe how many “experts” suddenly appear. In an age of growing superstitious beliefs, ideological extremism, and fiction promoted as factuality, the magical thinking of global social discourse colludes in debasing the prospects for an ascended human species. Where emotion over-rides the vital necessity to apply logical processes of deductive inquiry, prejudice, bias and malevolent instigations rationalize counterproductive behaviors. Why bother in the labors of transforming into a higher life form?
For those allowing self-deterioration in feeling gluttonously pampered, selfishly entitled, easily entertained, and intellectually simpleminded, the demise in not far away. Human devolution, the eventual extinction of the species, appears more realistic than science fiction could imagine. In fact, major theorists from academia to the hard sciences of the real world, speculate continually about the eventual demise of human civilization. From environmental catastrophe to nuclear terrorism, the regression unfolds.
Other than the notable efforts of a few innovative souls, for the enrichment or presumed entitlement of others, what has changed in terms of human nature? Not very much has transpired in a couple hundred thousand years. The potent singular personal impetus to ascend and transform into a higher life form has not be demonstrated by the vast numbers of the human species. Evils of that primal dichotomy of “good versus evil” in the essential nature of everyone, has not led to lofty heights of enlightenment.
Extraordinary maturation in the amazing energies of creativity and profound inventiveness looms longingly from the shadows. Darkly from the malevolence of amative resistance, alleged civilization on the planet regresses each day. In post-modern times, it is significantly arguable that something is amiss. Many ascribe a notion, or a sense, that there are weakening aspects of human interaction, more so than once believed. Frequently cited, is the metaphorical reference to a “zombie apocalypse”.
Allegory aside, others speculate about war among nation states, viral and bacterial infection, or corporate corruption and environmental exploitation as probable hypothesis for catastrophic demise. Others have reported the mathematical calculation of the inability of the planet to sustain growing global populations. In one report, scientists asserted eleven billion people would populate the earth during the 21st century.
Sustainability has nightmarish implications. Yet, in the illusions of magical thinking, hope springs eternal that simplistic solutions will suddenly fix every human problem. In the concept of “devolution” of the human species, as opposed to a specific defining feature of governmental interactions, legal action involving property, etc., the term “devolving” used here is far more serious.
Instead of “de-evolution”, as used in biology, herein this purpose refers to voluntary selfish actions of people, which are purposely maladaptive. Additionally included are the intentional counterproductive choices that select “devolutionary” behaviors. This correlates to extraordinary acts of social stupidity. Aspects of human regression appear every day in myriad news accounts, where people do harm to others.
Not just injuries and death upon people, but various life forms and the environment, which have become exploited with deliberate malice aforethought. Such behaviors are significantly associated with selfishly contrived inflictions that have regressive with terminal consequences. Such becomes human devolution toward human extinction.
From the classical criminological perspective, malice or selfishness, and with intentional purposes, the scheme of human ascendency regresses to primordial levels. Along with that, rational choice theory prevails with the notion that people make choices, regardless of socio-economic or other externalities of presumed deterministic instigations. The gluttonous self-centered aims to enrich one’s advantage over another, or an entire population remains historic with mounting disastrous consequences.
Basic parameters of illicit and unlawful behaviors, like destroying one’s planet, relates to unevolving thinking patterns that result in maladaptive outcomes. In addition to the exercise of free will, with stupidity of course, and intentional premeditation, along with gain calculated against risk, many forsake the efforts required for transformative ascendency. Transformation into well-differentiated and enlightened beings requires extraordinary devotion to personal change over generations.
Typical of criminogenic inclinations, counterproductive actions from one era to the next, generational replication, and related regressions signify the unevolving hedonistic processes of the human species. Analyze contemporary storytelling as told in recent apocalyptic drama. The revival of the so called “zombie apocalypse” offers insightful viewing of species degeneration as imagined by some creative writers. On closer examination, one might witness a continuous reinvention of an age-old saga.
Television, movies, books and video games depict various stories of the dead reanimating and threatening murderous destruction on the living. There are zombie role-play games, conventions and other related pop culture activities. In contrast to the film making and story tales of the 1930′s, post-modern zombies depict cannibalistic predators that may reflect something more socially regressive. As one group of researchers suggested, the morph from early 20th century fears of human exploitation, to 21st uncertainties of human extinction. A devolving culture is scary.
A potent metaphor by way of creative film and print viewing, could also express the worries about over-population, environmental exploitation, and gluttonous consumption. Add to that growing concern over terrorism, nuclear holocaust, political and corporate corruption, economic disparity, increasing superstitious and paranormal beliefs, and related factors. Along with the magical thinking of extreme ideologies, the seemingly “dumbing down” of one generation after the other, the dangers become real.
Added to the depth of primal fear of irreversible mortality, in a lifelong struggle to define the self, many people fruitlessly war to ensure their fame and fortune. For a legacy soon lost to dusty pages, they clamor for notice and special attention. In the process of sensitive self-pitying aggrandizement, anyone and anything is fair game for misuse and abuse. Seemingly validated as “alive”, a majority desires desperately to be heard, seen and touched so that special recognition anoints their validity.
Yet, for all the expenditures of energy to assert or claim “expertise”, special knowledge, or guru-like insight, in four billion plus years of earth, humanity is a blink of an eye. And in the several hundred thousand years that have passed, what has changed in terms of human nature. As all the “experts” pontificate their pundit “wisdom” for the simplest of answers, most have taken shortcuts in avoiding actual experiences. `
Recently, according to one particular research project, a sizeable majority readily accept a broad range of pseudo-scientific nonsense in place of serious evidentiary substantiation. Proof through verifiable sufficiency of facts has come under siege by egregious fallacies of inference. Cutting across social, economic and political interactivity, a lot people are quick to judge, accuse and react with unstable emotionalism. From pundits to politicians, the shortcut is quick and dangerous to leap into the morass of condescending fault finding in social commentary.
More and more, people find it easier to accept unsubstantiated conjecture, based mainly on personal opinion, and assume a particular correlation equates with definitive causation. Correlation does not yield causation, and neither does antidote equate to evidence. From that, hasty generalizations rapidly enjoin the connectivity of isolated events as “evidence” of a conspiracy, epidemic, or pattern of activity that “proves” something sinister is happening. Simplistic notions embrace foolish thinking.
Such erroneous assumptions perpetuate the willful neglect of critical analysis, rational assessment and logical deduction. The overall deterioration of productive and creative thinking processes the eventual collapse of culture. According to one hypothesis in a recent scientific journal, scientists proposed that human beings are susceptible to the “dumbing down” of thinking processes as an easier course of action. The implications across the spectrum of socio-economic and political interactions do not appear promising. As a species, we have embraced our diminution in our devolution to extinction.