Every now and then, most days when I am procrastinating doing the thing I’m supposed to be doing-which is most days, and I’m searching the internets, I come across something that is either terribly inspiring or gloriously horrifying. Often I’ll skim through the highlights, preferably watch an under 4 minute video, feel something about it and move along. Maybe I’ll like it, post it on the friendbook or if I’m really lucky it’ll come up in conversation later that day (lucky because lookit how smart and connected I am for knowing about things that happened in the interwebular land.)
Every extra special now and then, I find something that I want to bring up in conversation because, what the fuck, world? Can this really be a thing? Are we so vapid and depressingly content in the washing machine that we haven’t seen this?
Anyway, I watched a terribly inspirational video about happiness this morning (judge me if you will but it’s the one thing we all want and if some viral video can get me closer, I’ll take that) and it was all blah blah blah, fame and fortune won’t buy you happiness, blah blah blah, I’m fabulously wealthy and I never have to put plastic on my windows in the winter or take the bus and sit in somebody else’s urine (yes this happened to me). Regardless of their Whole Foods Health Approach, I kept watching and toward the end of the video, this guy Tom Shadyac (the creative genius behind Ace Ventura) was all “Darwin mentioned love 95 times in The Decent of Man. He mentioned the survival of the fittest twice.” And then I was all, WHAT? Really?!? Into internet land we delve.
So this psychologist and evolutionary systems scientist David Loye turns up and he's all,
"Powerfully contradicting the long embedded stereotype of "survival of the fittest" and "selfish gene" ...Darwin makes the case for the primacy of mutual aid, education, love, and moral sensitivity as higher order drivers for human evolution.
You will find that of selfishness—which he called “a base principle” accounting for “the low morality of savages”—he wrote only 12 times, but 92 times of moral sensitivity." Read more
I don’t really know how much I buy into Darwin’s grab bag of theories, and we can likely get into several hundred debates on what he wrote (cuz sometimes he got all religious 'n' shit), but that’s not really the point. I’m not concerned that we read and interpreted Darwin’s theories though a narrow lens, but rather that his theories have been taught for a fucking century without any alteration to include the whole picture. Our system has betrayed us again, subliminally informing young minds that evolution is based in selfish pursuits and only the most cutthroat will survive and flourish happily. But being a self absorbed asshole isn’t going to make you the coolest human or contribute to our species' prosperity. It’s not the penthouse suite. It’s not dancing chicks on a yacht. It's not even travelling the world in your private G.L.A.M.O.R.O.U.S jet. It’s fucking LOVE, man. Even scientists know that. Some dick wad somewhere in history decided that it was in their best interest to keep this information hidden. Lucky for us we are living in a global community now (hello internets) and there are good guys out there that are not only researching and writing papers about real happiness/positive psychology, but they’re also making movies so that we all get a piece of that information action.
Call me a conspiracy theorist, whatever. I'll take it as a compliment cuz those mutherfuckers are crazy cool. It’s just important that we share these things so we, as a highly evolved species, can compile all the information and really begin to believe that the shit that matters ACTUALLY DOES. Then we can quit idolizing a life we’ll never have and actually would never want (because it doesn't exist). Reminders are good. And when science reminds you, that's even better.
Connect, collaborate and love, man. Our lives depends on it.
ok, ramble out!