Language

By September 29, 2018Musings

“What if we were never taught as children to associate what we saw, heard or felt with anything particular? What if we weren’t taught to tell time? What if we were allowed to develop our natural impressions of everything around us? How would it be? What if our faculties were much more psychically in tune instead of logical?”

The way culture pans out is a direct result of human nature. Part of being psychically in tune with our nature is feeling the need to create structures and distinctions. Language was what set us apart from Neanderthals and allowed us to survive longer, since their vocal cords were not shaped properly to allow for complex language to develop. It was language which allowed us to accumulate knowledge like “how to build a fire” and pass it down over generations, so that newborn generations wouldn’t have to start over and could acquire more skills. This is what allowed the human species to survive, since physically we are not equipped to defend ourselves and could be taken down by most animals half our size.

Thus language (structure, distinctions, knowledge) was a staple of human society and we built on it, making bigger borders and structures to protect ourselves from predators. Our ancestors did this for us, which now allows us to be born into a fully built house, use money our parents made to buy food, and go to the hospital to get medicines that were created by previous generations so we don’t die every time we get sick.  This allows people like me and you to sit around on our computers in our safe haven, protected by walls that shield us from the elements and from natural predators, with access to food and medicine to allow us to survive, and sit around thinking about what it would be like if we knew nothing. The truth of it is, we would not be here thinking about that, if we had to think about surviving; and if people did not use language to build up cumulative knowledge and apply it, then survival is what we would be thinking about.

That said, I have often wondered if people just stopped talking about race, if racism would disappear within a few centuries. Distinctions like that are pointless, nonsensical and result in holding the species back from reaching its potential. If we didn’t have so many wars we would have more money for space programs to expand, but warring over territory and borders makes sense, as much as it seems we should be past it by now; because species who survive are the same ones who build up power and take down the weaker ones. Racism, however, is nonsensical. It is not natural either; children aren’t racist. It’s an absolutely learned behavior, socially conditioned.

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