Dog Eat Dog World

 I’ve often pondered the process by which human beings have evolved into a “higher” species….I find it fascinating stuff to think about and wonder about. I love to think about  instincts that are still ingrained, that we are often unaware of…..anyhow.

I’ve recently read Emotional Intelligence, by Daniel Goleman. His first chapter deals with the development of the brain. Fascinating stuff. He talks a lot about instincts. For example, the raising of the eyebrows in surprise is actually a primitive reaction that allows the eyes to open a little wider, so that we can visually take more in. Lethargy that comes with depression is likely an instinct that keeps a vulnerable member of the herd close to home during a time when he is not alert enough to effectively defend himself. Very cool. Lots of stuff like that there.

One of the places where I think our “animal instict” is still so apparent is on the highway. Even the nicest people tend to become so selfish, aggressive, territorial, and animal-like when driving in heavy traffic. Being conscious of this, I’ve made a HUGE effort to try to overcome my own animal instincts on the road. I find it so distasteful to think that I potentially have no control over my emotions when some idiot cuts me off or won’t let me in. So now I only call them the b-words, and leave out the gestures. (ha)

The point of this little entry is this. I have a belief that has been recently validated and reinforced. When things get really bad and survival becomes foremost, we tend to regress to behaving like animals.

So…what seperates us from other animals? I think that only 2 things raise us above other animals. 1) a little bit higher intelligence
2) belief in a higher power.

Especially the second.

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