Humanity’s problem with peace is animal instinct

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By Alex Lancial

Is peace attainable?

My answer to this question has always been, “Yes, but only if we want to attain it.” Humans have a bloody history, of trying to solve conflicts through war and conquering land with violence. In some ways this is expected; we are animals.

Throughout the animal kingdom there are displays of violence as a way of deciding who is the best, who gets to mate, etc. Its survival of the fittest, and humans, whether we like to admit it or not, are just like animals in that regard.

We’re constantly in battle and war as a way to one-up each other or show each other that “we mean business.” Only unlike animals, we have worked out how to use technology to our advantage as a way to kill each other more efficiently.

I’ve always thought that we, as humans, like to forget that we are animals. But I’ve changed my mind into thinking that our bodies are like animals, but our minds are definitely more advanced. This is why peace is such a problem for us.

If you took two humans and had them duel with no weapons and just their bodies, like animals, you could easily see the pain and damage it causes. I often think that our human minds, advanced and innovative as they are, will be our downfall.

You see, our minds are what have allowed us to dominate the animal kingdom and the world. We’ve developed weapons from a spear to nuclear missiles that not only enable us to kill huge animals but kill each other in competition. Our minds act on a violent, competitive animal instinct, which is how so many atrocities have been committed in our history.

In my opinion, peace will only be attained if humans can make a distinction between our animalistic bodies and instincts and our very advanced human minds. But until that happens, until we actually want peace, we won’t be able to attain it.

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