• Esther Murbach

How to Get to the End of the World

09.09.2015


Humanity – quo vadis? Some philosophers and clergy claim that man is the crown of creation. They don’t always agree about woman. Is she also a crown or just a tinsel version? Feminists, please, don’t throw knives at me! I’m a woman, too, and I did not invent patriarchy or the so-called natural order of things. Some say GOD did, whoever HE is. Though, one of HIS presumed sons or prophets, the one called Jesus, certainly did not see eye to eye with daddy on this point.

As to the being of GOD, there is also dissent about its definition. Does HE really exist? Is HE definable at all? Does HE always know what HE is doing? E.g., when HE created mankind, why did HE invent suffering? Slavery? Crime? War producing millions of refugees? The killing of innocents? Etc?

I want to refrain from uttering a personal opinion. Let me just state a few facts.

Scientifically speaking, we live on the planet of the intellectual apes. Man/woman is a highly developped animal of the mammal category. Compared to other versions, this mammal has a hypergenetic brain with amazing faculties. It invented many stupendous technical devices. Our closest humanoid relative, the chimpanzee, may be able to use a stick to catch ants, a stone to crack nuts or a club to attack his brethren. The human has taken this much further to an incredible degree. Technology and sophistication have become a blessing as well as a curse. The dualistic system of construction and destruction is in a precarious balance.

Why?

Unfortunately the ethical development of the human brain lags behind its intellectual faculties. We often fool ourselves by thinking we make reasonable decisions while in reality we are controlled by the most archaic part of our brain, the brainstem. I.e. by our most basic impulses. Hunger. The urge for procreation = sex. Seeking advantage and domination = power. Originally features developed to guarantee the survival of individuals or tribes in a harsh environment. In their extreme form, these features lead to robbing, raping, killing. To put it in a nutshell. Homo sapiens has always ruthlessly used all its incredible faculties as a means to mostly dubious ends.

Of course, there was also social development. Love. Altruism. Ethos. Creativity for beauty’s sake. All this still exists, too. But is it predominant in human behaviour?

What would you say, dear reader? Which path will the world choose on the way to its end? Destruction is inevitable, the question being just how and when it will happen. We have a few lovely options. I would like to do a survey on the most probable scenario. To this purpose, please, tick one of the items on the following multiple choice questionnaire:

  • Flooding because of global warming – in about 200 years

  • Starvation due to overpopulation – in about 100 years

  • Irreversible pollution of our natural resources – in about 75 years

  • A nuclear war triggered by e.g. North Korea – anytime

  • A global war conducted by chemical warfare agents – anytime

  • The outbreak of a super volcano (e.g. the one under Yellowstone Park) – anytime

  • Gravitational force pulling Planet Earth towards the Sun – in a few billion years

The latter would be a death of natural cosmic causes; in case mankind makes it to this point, having found a method to eliminate all its destructive actions. Will we achieve the gobal turnaround to ethical, reasonable behaviour? Will love steer the stars from this point forthwith? Will we meet a happy end by riding into a glorious 1.000.000°C sunset? It would be my preference. What is yours?

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© 2019 by Esther Murbach