Our species is quite adept at manufacturing reality. We take what we see, use our tiny little brain and then decide what it is. We do turn to science for the facts, some facts at least. But we do not try to look for all the aspects, all the sides to something. We always just have to jump to a conclusion, and then hold on to it as if our very existence depended on it. We are quite fond of stories, and weave many of our own. We have created a whole reality for ourselves in which we assume ourselves to be the superior species for whom the universe exists. We seem to be forgetting that we are limited to just a few billion members inhabiting an inconspicuously small watery planet. Our puny imagination cannot even estimate the number of stars the universe (or whatever we have come to understand of it) contains. We are limited to our mortal lives which don’t even span more than a century. Compared to the age of our planet we haven’t even lived out our infancy. But in this minuscule moment we have caused so much mayhem, chaos and destruction. We have managed to kill millions of our own species and obliterated entire species from our planet.
We have taken ownership over lands, metals, rocks and things that we didn’t even create in the first place! Whatever ‘wealth’ we keep talking about is just an abstract idea! That’s just something we made up to suit ourselves. And then we decide if someone should get something or not based on how much ‘wealth’ he is willing to part with. That something in this case can even be just some fruit, that is made by the land mostly by itself. Nowadays we have some pieces of software that are worth billions of ‘dollars’, that only a few thousand or million people use. But at the same time we have millions of people who can’t even afford basic necessities such as food and clean water. Isn’t this just ridiculous? We talk of human rights and poor people in expensive conference rooms decorated with imported vases amid rich people while hungry people sleep outside in makeshift tents in constant fear of getting evicted by their own government, or run over by some inebriated, rich douche. How is this not the sign of a made-up reality in which we have been holed up for so long that we can’t even see past our own ego and greed? Rich people can afford all the comforts of the world because several hundreds of people are toiling hard and long for decades in unhealthy work conditions and earning a pittance. The only eligibility those rich folks hold is that they were born in that family and hence inherited the apparent ‘wealth’ of their ancestors. The true inheritance that we naturally get is the same planet that has been here even before humans came into existence. This artificial ‘wealth’ is nothing more than a facade that acts solely to protect the interests of the rich people. Many economists and philosophers and pro-free-market evangelists will argue against this. But a child born into a poor family is resigned to a life of struggle and pain, unless he is ‘lucky’ to make a break and become ‘wealthy’. He then joins an elite club of ‘rich’ people and so can provide the best of facilities to his children that he subsequently produces. But what are the chances of a poor guy actually making the jump in his lifetime? Practically and statistically speaking, very very low. All those success stories that people keep peddling in their feel-good, motivational books are just a few handful among millions of poor people. It is like the observation someone had about popular blog sites that were making good revenue. Those blogging sites were blogging about ‘blogging to earn money’! Oh the irony. It’s like someone cutting down a tree to print a thousand posters to spread awareness against deforestation.
That’s not even the end of it! We didn’t stop just there. Enter, religion. I personally believe this is one of the most ingenious ideas that some people came up with. We humans tend to fear things that we don’t understand. Since we didn’t understand a lot of things in the old days we ended up praying to them and making them ‘Gods’. I do believe God exists. But I don’t think God is a wise old person who looks down upon us from the heavens and keeps track of us, but rather the whole of the universe in entirety including us and the trillions of atoms, neutrons, electrons, quarks, leptons that we are made up of and the spark that makes us breathing, sentient beings. I am also supportive of Elon Musk’s simulation theory; that’s entirely plausible too. There has been no scientific discovery related to ‘God’, so we can’t fully rely on anyone’s explanation. But what people have done is that they have taken ownership over their Gods. They have taken it upon themselves to defend their Gods and their faiths. They have created their own rule books based on which they wage wars and even kill people of their own faith who do not support their views. These rule-books were created centuries ago and not many can testify to their authenticity, save for blind belief. They do say good things – like code of conduct for us and what we should aspire for and how to manage our human tendencies etc. So there is no reason to question them. That’s well and good, but problem arises when people take them way too seriously and start violating others’ freedoms to assert their own interpretations of these texts. Perhaps there is some misplaced sense of priority people give to these old, arcane and often abstruse texts than to living, breathing humans. Religion is quite tricky as it can get a lot of people to believe in a purely artificial, abstract construct. That is constructive, in many cases. People are more creative and sincere since they believe they are doing it for their beloved Gods. They make beautiful monuments, write amazing prayers and create harmonious societies. But sometimes it also gets them instigated to such an extent that they don’t think twice before killing other people. Nowadays people have come up with several ideas to make ‘wealth’ off other people’s devotion! The babas, the gurus and the spiritual leaders are nothing short of rockstars who create a fan following and routinely conduct ‘tours’ to rake up ‘donations’ for their charitable organisations. Anyway, that is much more benign compared to the religious war that is going on in the global scale. Millions of people are being displaced by this insane ‘holy war’ that has no clear goal. Now entire countries are arguing over who should take the displaced refugees and help them get on with their lives. Humans have come down to this now.
Its not just the religions that are causing problems. We have divided the planet into many countries which all have their own sorts of rules, restrictions and problems. People from many countries quarrel with people from other countries for trivial reasons. Sometimes that is escalated to war. We already have fought two world wars in which millions of people from many countries died. There is a war every single day on the planet nowadays between some or the other countries. The leaders at the top with their over-inflated egos are unable to reach an amicable position which results in occasional skirmishes in several places. The problem with countries is that they keep thinking about the interests of their own people who have voted them to power, or their own interests if they are dictators. They never think about the problems concerning the entire planet. Our species has affected the planet so much that we have started observing discernible changes in climate patterns. This will definitely affect our agriculture and food sourcing adversely over the coming decades. But the countries still keep quarreling and blaming others for the issues that everyone is now facing.
All these ideas that I have listed are all artificial. God, or whoever or whatever created us never made these. We humans came up with this stuff and are unable to extricate ourselves from the mess these are causing. Since a child’s birth he is conditioned to conform to the rules of our society and the whole artificial system that is setup by our species. At every stage his actions and decisions are dictated to him by others, lest he become incompatible with the society and thus bring a bad name to the family. That is nothing more than the insecurities of others that are put on his shoulders in the form of expectations. He never gets the chance to explore the planet which he inherits in entirety. He is restricted from moving to other places unless he fills up a dozen forms and complies to thousands of artificial and illogical rules. At birth his name, religion, career and benefits-plan is decided. He is never given the choice between all the choices our planet has to offer. Rather he is assigned those parameters which he has to accept, ungrudgingly.
I must say, we humans really are funny this way.