As humans we have a false sense of ourselves. We believe that we as individuals are important. We no longer believe that our planet is the center of the universe, but that science has not informed our view of the individual. Our religious belief that we are the central character in our destiny is elegant, yet simple and without merit. This view has carried over into our view that individual pursuits are important to the state of the world. More importantly, many believe that the individual is more important than the group.
The communists took the view that the individual was not as significant as the group, while the capitalists considered the person to be the center of the universe. Both ideas have some truth, but neither is complete. The truth is somewhere in the middle. An elegant and informative way to see our place in the biosphere is to look at natural occurrences like the current cicada invasion.
The current brood of cicada will descend on the east coast any moment. The sound will be loud and unmistakable. Most of us will hear a loud uncoordinated noise. The truth is that what we hear is generated by 3 different species singing their individual song. The chorus will appear to be homogeneous, but on close inspection it is not. When an individual from each specie is recorded the sound is nothing like that heard from the group. The elegance of the orchestra is lost on us because we see the world not as a group organism but as individuals trying to survive. Each individual sings a precise song that is essential to the mating process. The regeneration of the genome is each individuals only job. If each individual gets it correct the group will survive. If a specific individual does not perform the group will still survive. The individuals will die, but the group survives.
Without the group the individual remains insignificant and without hope. The me card is not just selfish, it is problematic for the survival of the human specie.
What will you do for us today?