Agreed, but...
Sun Aug 18, 2019 09:05

68 years of hanging around this foredoomed planet, as well as interrogating the nature of the centuries previous, is all the proof I require to know that humanity never has and never will grasp the tenuousness of its understanding and that hatred and rancor will never lose their power to convince. Ain't in our DNA, regrettably, an existential shortcoming the bill on which is shortly to come due in the face of our willful incapacity to pay it. To suggest differently--not that you are--is the very definition of insanity.

You know, I used to believe, like you, that understanding could only improve by recognizing the errors of our ways. That this was one legitimate reason--there are others--to study history. The old chestnut about how if we do not learn from the mistakes of the past we are doomed to repeat them. No more. What seems clear to me now is that we can learn until we are blue in the face and we will continue to make the same or similar, which is to say even worse, mistakes over and over and over again.

Of course I cannot prove it in the scientific sense, but it is almost as if our species has been genetically pre-programmed to at some point--date uncertain--self-destruct. That we are, through every fault of our own, caught in the jaws of a deathwish. Either that, or the primal drive to become trans-human, which is to say more than human, which is to say no longer human.

But perhaps this is not grim as it may sound. Perhaps a global mass extinction event is precisely what the doctor ordered. Time to turn the wheel over to some other life or semi-life or non-life form. Let it have a crack at making a cock-up of every last precious and beautiful thing that in our hubris and ignorance and mindless avarice we have managed to ravage and destroy.

If there is any justice in this world....(there isn't)

  • Intimations...Jeff Morey, Sun Aug 18 07:47
    Olds, Perhaps the most we can hope for are fleeting intimations of the past. While this sounds like a minuscule and frail accomplishment, to those of us whose curiosity about the past is passionate,... more
    • Agreed, but... — olds, Sun Aug 18 09:05
      • Being a pessimist myself....Jeff Morey, Sun Aug 18 09:52
        Olds, Being a pessimist myself, I have no retort to your pessimism. I would like to see something, noble, grand, and visionary in the human spirit. But, Mark Twain saw through all of that humbug:... more
        • Terrific Twain quote.olds, Sun Aug 18 10:34
          Agree with every word. So then why were we schooled in Tom Sawyer, Huck Finn and Connecticut Yankee--not that there is anything wrong with that, just not to the exclusion of The Mysterious Stranger?... more
          • “The Mysterious Stranger”Jeff Morey, Sun Aug 18 11:54
            Olds, There are two reasons we aren’t schooled in “The Mysterious Stranger”. 1.) “The Mysterious Stranger” requires a certain kind of experience and a certain amount of that kind of experience to... more
            • I prefer to imagine youolds, Sun Aug 18 13:19
              as my mysterious friend, if that's OK with you. Unknowable, but in the best conceivable way. I agree about teaching The Mysterious Stranger to high school Freshmen, even Sophomores, but by Senior... more
              • Denial...Jeff Morey, Sun Aug 18 17:43
                Olds, Yes, denial “ is a survival technique”. But, survival techniques which distort reality have a messy way of not panning out. When we are in denial, what exactly is it that we want to “survive”... more
                • To you and Iolds, Sun Aug 18 19:16
                  they may seem "trivial matters," but clearly they are not trivial to the deniers or, I presume, they wouldn't bother denying. To the deniers, that which is in fact trivial can only be of existential... more
Click here to receive daily updates