Three Amazing Discoveries / or

30 May

 

How All This Mess Got Started

It seems reasonable to assume any major species that has survived intact for, say, a million years has followed and obeyed whatever life pathways it was designed for.  This must include suitable environment, food sources, predation defense and reproduction matters. If no other factors were present would we not presume the human species was subject to the same forces and limits throughout our early development?

So what happened?  How did a species spend millennia behaving as all others must do and then become in a few thousand years the scourge of an entire planet?  Perhaps the single factor that precipitated us towards what we have become was a new possibility offered our kind that tipped the scale.  We were as a species, during prior ages, subject to limitations suffered by most residents of earth which is basically living a hand to mouth existence.

At some point during what is called the Late Bronze Age great changes occurred testing our species as never before happened with any other. We began to have a surplus of food.  Actually there were three forms of  discovery; two new and one quite ancient. In the deserts and on the vast steppes, mankind had developed animal husbandry, keeping and breeding of other animals for food and draft use. .

At about the same time in the deltas and river valleys where suitable soils were found, agriculture was begun. These two propitious additions to human life were in addition to another ancient discovery that accrued to only one segment of the species. This third discovery when added to the two newer ones, produced the possibility of great imbalance in human affairs if abused.  With the food supply mostly assured, the uncertain future came closer to human control, but this presented a world class ethical dilemma.

Because our species is mammalian, one segment is capable of taking advantage of a  surplus of biological time not available to the other, i.e. the time females spend in menstruation, pregnancy and lactation. These mammalian requirements could, and apparently did, lead to the male segment’s use of this unearned surplus of leisure time to the detriment of the female and ultimately shaped all human destiny thereafter.

We are vaguely made aware through ancient mythology of the beginnings of this human villainy. We since have read of all the smiting and smoting, the sacking and seizing and the human slavery that was instituted. Scores were kept of the tribes that won; the ones that lost.  Towns and settlements destroyed or ravaged; details of this sort of thing were duly recorded.  What does not appear in the record is at what point females too, were added to the trophy.  All of them, an entire gender was taken as de facto  hostage.

In modern terminology what has been happening since to the feminine segment is known as the Stockholm Syndrome.  In it captives acquiesce over time to fondness, even love for their captors. Is that where we are today? Do males indeed rule the entire planet? A glance around the known world would suggest it is so. Is one gender then subject to the will of the other?

To dispel any doubts, ascertain the degree of input from the feminine half of humankind that went into the decision making of any of these major human preoccupations.

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