The events of the past few months, and in fact, the past few years, teach us a very important lesson: If we want to survive, we must learn from nature how to do it, since if we follow our own ideas, we will continue the march of folly until we destroy human civilization and our planet. When we look at nature, there is one law that weaves all its parts together into a perfect tapestry: balance and collaboration. That law is exactly what we humans do not abide by in our own society. Instead of balance, we strive for prominence at the expense of others, and swap collaboration with exploitation. If we keep this up, we are on our way to extinction.
I am not saying that we must love one another or even care for one another all at once. However, we must know nature’s laws and what happens when we break them. Since we are currently acting contrary to the law of balance and collaboration, we must also know the consequences, the penalty, if you will, for breaking it.
We are already feeling some of the consequences of our ignorance and vanity. Food shortages are worsening around the world, and hunger has become a real peril in places that have not known it for centuries. Gas shortages are also hampering production and causing energy insecurity in western, leading OECD countries, and the overall atmosphere is that hard days are coming.
Indeed, it is only the beginning. According to pundits, we are looking into years of deprivation and scarcity.
But there is no real reason for it. No natural disaster has hindered humanity’s ability to produce abundant food or ample gas and oil. It is we humans who are inflicting these deficiencies for the sole purpose of crushing one another. Nothing guides our moves but hate, and hate destroys everything, including, ultimately, the hater.
Because everything we do stems from the motivation to defeat and vanquish others, nothing we do succeeds. When one effort fails, we move on to another, but it, too, is bound to fail for the exact same reason: our foul intentions toward others.
How, then, can we change our nature? What can make us care for others? To do that, we first need to acknowledge the truth about our own nature, and then we can begin to nurture a new one within us. What all other beings do instinctively—follow the law of balance and collaboration—we can accomplish only if we choose it consciously. The way to do this is by realizing that we are made inherently opposite from this law, and then carefully examine each and every aspect of our lives, and adjust it to work according to that law.
It may seem unfair that only humans have to learn this law the hard way, but there is a great reward at the end of the process. Since humans are the only ones who have to go through the learning process, we are also the only ones who will reap the reward.
When we learn about human nature and the nature of the rest of reality, we begin to compare them. As a result, we gradually learn to value the law of balance and collaboration. We understand much deeper than any being since we have something to compare it to, a negative image of the law, and its palpable consequences. When we begin to act according to the law of balance and collaboration, it is because we made a conscious choice to do so after learning about our own nature and choosing to shun it and adopt a new, more inclusive and cooperative nature.
For us, then, learning to care about others is not an instinctive process, but a profound process of deepening consciousness, and choosing care and connection over alienation and exploitation every step of the way. This is the real advantage of man over beast—the gift of consciousness. However, we earn it only after having chosen balance over superiority, and collaboration over exploitation.
The painful process that humanity is undergoing will ultimately lead us to make that choice. However, awareness can shorten the process and make it much easier and quicker. The sooner we understand that all our troubles stem from our malice and cruelty toward each other, the sooner we will open our eyes and realize that there is another option. Then, the sooner we choose the option of balance and collaboration, the sooner our troubles will end and peace will begin.