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Sunday, September 8, 2013

What is the Essence of Mankind?

Humankind: What is their Essence?
What is Essence: The most basic feature or element.

I found myself wondering what was the answer to this question, so I put it to the Internet, and what I have found is that this is perhaps one of those very huge questions with probably no wrong answers. I found a lot of answers from a group of students who had the question for an exam. They offered such noble traits as honesty, truthfulness, trustworthiness, faithfulness, diligence, belief in God, among others.

I am not helping matters because I have come up with my own answer, that will only serve to further muddy the waters, but before I get to that, here are some thoughts from famous people on the topic:

Aristotle: The energy of the mind is the essence of life:
Julius Caesar: It is better to create than to learn: Creating is the essence of life.
George Orwell: The essence of being human is that one does not seek perfection.
Baruch Spinoza: Desire is the very essence of man.
Kathy Bates: I want to be dignified by my own essence.
Tina Turner asks: I want to know what the difference between the essence of a man, and a woman is?

Good question Tina, and I will say that I don't think there is a difference, but perhaps I'm getting ahead of myself.

First, who is mankind? In the Big Picture, we are simply another specie, but we think very highly of ourselves. We have been capable of amazing things over the years, some good, some definately horrible. We have the power to think and to reason and to know the difference between right and wrong. We have become masters of our domain, but other species are perhaps just as brilliant. Consider the birds and the fish, two species upon which we have designed solutions to our own problems. However, in communications both of these are light years ahead of ourselves.

We do have the same thing in common with fish and birds, and that is our first order of business is the procreation of life. This is a built-in instinct, and if it were not so powerful I doubt that men and women would be able to cooperate on anything, so vastly different are our points of view on just about everything.

As males, we are driven to create and to solve, but there is always somebody for whom we dedicate our lives...somebody to whom we can say, " I did it for you, and the children."  Even in same sex relationships the essence remains alive. We all know that two men or two women can never bring forth a new life from their own bodies, but that does nothing to diminish their need to fulfill their essence.

So, before we get to all the great achievements of humankind, I believe that our basic order of business is to ensure the survival of the specie...the human specie.

It may be correct and acceptable to say that getting laid is a kind of social duty, so get busy!

Copyright (c) 2013    Eugene Carmichael