Society is meant to be a civilized form of living where each person has an opportunity to succeed or fail based on choice and merit. Instead, civilization is yet another word we mold into whatever meaning is convenient or fashionable in that particular moment in history. Words have become interchangeable with definitions so frequently that they have lost all power to communicate honestly and effectively. We can forget morality because the vast majority of mankind has forgotten that kind words used to placate others without accompanying action to give teeth to the half-hearted gestures do more harm than outright lies.
If we take prominent examples that lead countries and powerful corporations, we see an aversion to truth. Each entity tasked with employing and governing people start with noble aspirations and quickly descend into a lethargy that breeds corruption and active disinformation campaigns against the interests of those it purports to serve. Words take on new meanings as each of these agencies acts strictly in their self-interests. There is nothing wrong with self-preservation. Humans haven’t evolved to dominate a planet of more simple creatures by only looking out for themselves.
In the infancy of mankind, we faced struggles against creatures both large and better evolved for the predatory environment that dominated our planet when our numbers were few. We lacked the technological know-how to give ourselves the upper hand on the large and unruly beasts that once roamed this earth. We overcame these struggles and began to thrive not because we were the biggest or the strongest but because we used our higher intellect. Man realized that hunting in groups could feed a fledgling community. Our ability to work together and trust one another enabled us to take down big game and sustain population growth until the benefits of farming were discovered.
Communal farming was another human endeavor that benefitted from trust in the integrity of our fellow man. Without a concerted effort and villages working in unison to plant and harvest the crops, significant technological breakthroughs couldn’t have been made that enable us to enjoy the luxuries we have today. The wheel, for example, wasn’t invented until after agriculture, and it is something we can take for granted but would be lost without today. To breed great minds takes continuous development and progress forward towards a common goal. Agriculture enabled us to stabilize and grow the population and thus made life easier for early man. The plow was invented, then pulled by oxen or other hooved animals, freeing up early men for other pursuits.
Today, we take so much for granted. The freedom we have to spend in pursuit of the frivolous and inane are borne from the hard work of all that came before us. Good times breed weak men, and hard times produce strong men that enable us to live in comparative luxury. No lesson from history has been so glaring as the one I’ve just laid out for you. The rise and fall of societies are cyclic in nature, and nothing is new under the sun. Civilizations collapse when they lose a sense of identity. When we lack unifying morals and ethics, then our institutions lose their power and their authority. Each man becomes an island unto himself. While the cruel hand of time marches on, everything decays, including nations and people who inhabit them. We become caricatures of ourselves. When lies are called truth and truth is called heresy, then we have signaled the end of all so many have worked so hard to build. We live in a world of rapacious and vapid individuals keen only on self-promotion with no regard for the future we leave for generations to come.
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