Evolution?

The planet we inhabit was formed about 4. 5 billion years ago. Since then it has been evolving, growing, changing. It has only been able to support life for about 3.5 billion years.  We arrived about 200,000 years ago.  A little late to the party but we have made one hell of an impact!

And we as a species evolved. We no longer grunt to communicate because of course that’s rude. We tamed our world and beat it into submission. We harnessed the power of fire and air and water. But it was a long time getting to where we are now. And where are we going? We have caused so much damage on our journey but not all of it was our fault.

As a species we are greedy and we always want more. Perhaps we are still children in the greater scheme of things and like children we always want… But we are also curious and that curiosity leads us to go farther and farther from our home. We want to learn and that is perhaps our greatest asset. But like children we need to be cautionary. We need to learn to take small steps before those giant leaps. We have taken some big leaps and failed miserably but we learned from our failure. We are resilient and if we can temper our insatiable curiosity just a tiny bit then perhaps the future is not bleak.

As individuals we are also evolving. We have come through the Cro-Magnon and the Neanderthal to Homo sapiens. It was a long journey and there are a few who seem to be reverting back to an earlier stage. We tolerate them. But we are trying. We are trying to correct our mistakes, perhaps not as quickly as we should have, but we are trying. And perhaps that is all we can expect. Or maybe that is the mistake. Maybe we need to reach for the stars and expect to reach it.  Could that be the next step in our evolution?  What we are willing to do to reach it?  Are we willing to give up who we are for who we could become? Am I? Are you?

That is the frightening thing about the future: we don’t know what to expect. We can hope but we won’t know until after the fact and history records what happened. But we can work towards a better future if we work together. And as an unrepentant optimist I believe that our future will be wondrous. Perhaps not today or tomorrow, but the distant future is what I believe in. Just as I believe in me and you.

36 thoughts on “Evolution?

  1. joylennick

    Thank you for that Pamela. Apart from love and hope – the two main ingredients required – we should encourage curiosity and deeper thinking. We, of course, all have different brain power and knowledge, but if only more people would USE IT TO BETTER EFFECT. Most like to be in step with their neighbour – the herd instinct seems to be strong -..but if more folk ‘pulled out all the stops’ and fully engaged their minds about the world, fellow travellers and life itself, in a peaceful manner,wouldn’t that benefit everyone?! (Common sense seems to be hiding…) Hugs x.

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  2. Dan Antion

    I do remain optimistic about the future, Pam. So much has already happened that we hadn’t dreamt of (although, still no flying cars, what’s up with that), I think we’ll get this right eventually.

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  3. Murphy's Law

    If we all dropped the “me, myself and I” attitude, we would accomplish so much more. Optimism should be second nature to all of us. After all, we are one huge, worldwide commUNITY. If we face the unknown future hand in hand, it won’t seem so overwhelming.
    Ginger

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  4. Maggie Wilson

    A thought provoking post. Sometimes I muse about humans’ compulsion to explore and to venture forth. From coming down from the treetops to colonizing the Moon. I wish I shared your optimism, but I cannot say that we deserve to move to new frontiers until we have learned our lessons.

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  5. floridaborne

    Thanks for a thought provoking post.

    When I look at what we know about the galaxy, two truths emerge: (1) There is darkness, there is light. (2) No fauna remains living without consuming plants, animals and (for some flora and fauna) light. We are, by nature, eat-or-be-eaten. We contain organisms inside us, some are beneficial and some are not, yet even the beneficial bacteria needs us as a host to survive. It’s estimated that 40% of life on Earth is parasitic.

    The difference between all other life on Earth and humans is the fact that we are aware of these things. I agree that we are still in childhood as a species and, like children, we WANT. Also, like children, if mother Earth and father Sun are fighting we don’t see the faults in them, we think we did something to cause it. All we need is one supervolcano explosion to discover that anything we ever did to Earth was child’s play in comparison.

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    1. John Hric

      floridaborne – Interesting perspective. I just skimmed some of the 40 % articles. And while I agree there are a lot of parasitic animals I did not see much in the way of categorizing parasitic and non parasitic groups. A pair of scientists have identified 223 parasites. What I am not seeing is a list of the other categories. Predator’s, herbivores, omnivores, carnivores, Autotrophs, organisms that get their energy from thermal boundaries ( volcanism ), beneficial symbiotic organisms, and so on. There are an estimated 8.7 species many of which have yet to be identified. Basically it makes me think the 40% is a very rough estimate. One that may or may not do a good job of taking other categories into consideration. So yes we have a lot to learn. Including as you mention the power of mother earth and the universe to demonstrate major life altering events.

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  6. tidalscribe

    A thoughtful post. Human beings have always been keen to explore, travel and invent; most of us have the creative urge to constantly try something new, whether it’s writing, a craft or inventing a wonderful new source of green power!

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  7. Widdershins

    I reckon we’re more like extremely annoying adolescents, and if (it’s a very big ‘if’) we can get through the pimples-and-hormones stage without killing ourselves, we might just achieve all that we could be.

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  8. Kate@VanhaTaloSuomi

    We had a similar conversation over the dinner table this past weekend.
    I remarked about my late 1960-1970s childhood vs my husband’s 1960-1970s in Finland – which for those who do not know, would have been a completely different experience from Midwest USA. Opposite in fact.
    Possibly some of us can remember when the ‘space race’ to put a man on the moon also ushered in a whole era full of dreams of futuristic living, travel and exploration of space and beyond.
    Jet packs, flying cars, colonization of the moon! I remember those topics being bandied about.
    I ponder now, what happened to those ‘pie-in-the-sky’ dreams? What happened to those explorers and pioneers?
    Instead, the late 1970s brought fossil fuel shortages, oil embargoes, hostage seizures, which were later followed by 1980’s excess, discos & cocaine-a-plenty.
    Evolution vs devolution.
    I think human the specie went on a regressive spin-out after WWII and it’s been spiraling out of control ever since. One only need look at the USA to see the effects of what decadence, corruption & rampant greed have wrought.
    Yes, there have been some stellar achievements, but for all of them, the poor are poorer, the hungry still unfed, the diseased still uncured.
    I think the lure of nostalgia is what holds so many to political extremism instead of progressively championing for the betterment of all, instead of the enrichment of the few.

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    1. quiall Post author

      I think in the sixties and seventies we still believed in the dream. We believed people meant well and there would be a story book ending. The eighties showed us the dark side and we have been fighting it ever since. My optimism has taken a beating but I still have hope.

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  9. Sun Hesper Jansen

    Oh, Pam. I go away and come back to find you as steady a rock as I remember. I continue to be a little scattered, after the old blog (Fairy of Disenchantment) was replaced by the new (Away from the Machine) and then both demanded to exist at once, but as I hope for a little stable place to sink my roots into once again, I’m glad to find YOU here. PS your prayers are powerful! ~Sunshine

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